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Talks on the 
Sarvasar Upanishad 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

Talks on the Sanvasar Upanishad 



Westland Ltd 

westland ltd 

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4322/3, Ansari Road, Daryaganj, New Delhi 110 002 

First published by westland ltd 2012 

Copyright © 1972, 2012 OSHO International Foundation, 

OSHO is a registered trademark of OSHO International Foundation, 
used under license, 

Photos of Osho: Courtesy OSHO International Foundation 

Originally published as Sarvasar Upanisbad. The material in this book is from a 
series of talks by Osho given to a live audience. The complete OSHO text 
archive can be found via the online OSHO Library at 

The sutras Osho comments on are from the Sarvasar Upanishad, translated by 
Yoga Pratap Bharati, copyright © OSHO International Foundation. 

All rights reserved 

109 8 765 4 3 2 1 

ISBN: 978-93-81626-96-2 

Inside book formatting and typesetting by Ram Das Lai 
Printed at Manipal Technologies Ltd. 

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in 
any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, 
recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without prior 
written permission from OSHO International Foundation. 


1. One Boat, Two Travelers 1 

2. The Inquiry 32 

3. The Sage Answers 55 

4. The Four States of Existence 72 

5. The Individual Search 89 

6. The Physical and Energy Bodies 108 

7. The Mental Body and the Bodies of Awareness and Bliss 128 

8. Going beyond the Senses 155 

9. You Are Your Prison 175 

10. We Are What We Do 193 

11. What Is Eternal? 218 

12. Love Is Freedom 238 

13. You Are More than You Think 255 

14. The End of Illusion 269 

15. The Servant Has Become the Master 296 

16. Beyond All — the Witness , 322 

17. Such Is This Mystery 347 



Chapter - 1 

One Boat, Two Travelers 


May the divine protect us both,- 
may it care for us both. 
Together may we strive. 

May our knowing be brilliant. 
May we hold no envy. 

Aum, peace, peace, peace. 

To extract the essence from the ordinary, the insignificant, is already 
difficult enough, but then to extract the quintessential essence of all 
the essences is much more difficult. To discover the significant from 
the insignificant is already not easy, but then to extract the ultimate 
significance from all that is significant is almost impossible. To search 
for gold in the dust presents its own trials and difficulties, but to find 
the quintessence of gold from the gold is almost impossible. 

The meaning of Sarvasar, of the Sarvasar Upanishad, is: the 
quintessential essence, the most foundational of all the esoteric 
knowledge that has ever been discovered. An essence where not 
even a word can be removed, where nothing remains to be discarded, 
an essence from where the gross has been eliminated and only the 
pure self remains, from which the gross that is the gold has been 
separated out, and only the absolute "goldness" has been saved. 
Such is this Upanishad. 

In understanding this one Upanishad, doors will open to the 
most profound understanding known by the genius of man. Hence 
its name, Sarvasan the secret of secrets, the mystery within all the 
mysteries, the essence of essences. 

Such a thing is dangerous too, because as a science becomes more 
subtle, so also it becomes more difficult to grasp. The purer the truth, 
the farther away it moves from our understanding. It is not the fault 
of truth, it is only that our understanding is so contaminated that the 
gap between us and truth has become vast. The only reason for it is 
our impurity. Hence, the more subtle the truth, the more impractical 
it becomes for us in our everyday existence. 

That is why, although the ultimate knowledge of life was discovered 
in this country, all we do is waste our time in merely talking about it. It 
has never occurred to us that it has to be lived. And even if we want to 
live it, we don’t know which way to approach it - and even if we make 
this decision, we don’t know in which direction to begin to move. It 
is so profound, so subtle, that we drop all hope of living it. Then, just 
to deceive ourselves, we talk about it and feel consoled. 

So we have talked about it for centuries — and we have talked 
about that which cannot be understood by talking about it, about 
that which can only be known by living it. To live it is the only way to 
know it. We can understand it only if we integrate it into our lives. To 
live it is to understand it. 

There are some profound dimensions of life where no gap exists 
between knowing and being; where to know it and to be it are one 
and the same,- where to be it is the only way to know it. 

But "to be" seems difficult to us and "to know about" feels easy, 
because all that we usually mean by knowing is to know a few words, 
a few doctrines, some philosophies, some scriptures. Our intellect 
becomes filled with words and doctrines, but the heart remains empty. 
And there is no situation more dangerous than this - where the 
intellect is filled up from the outside and the heart is empty - because 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

this sort of intellect will create the illusion that one has attained, while 
nothing has actually been attained. With an intellect like this one feels 
that one is full, but inside all is empty and hollow, poor and miserable. 
The soul remains like the empty bowl of a beggar, while the intellect 
lives in the illusion that it is an emperor. 

More people are misled by intellect than by ignorance, and more 
people drown sitting in their boats of intellect than sitting in the paper 
boats of their ignorance, because one appears to know - although one 
does not know at all. That is why I have said that subtle maxims of 
ultimate wisdom such as in the Sarvasar Upanishad are also dangerous,- 
the fear is that we may only turn them into objects to think about. We 
may think about them, grasp them and then be finished with them. 
Hence, 1 warn you in advance that to involve oneself in the teachings 
of an Upanishad is like playing with fire. An Upanishad cannot be 
understood without also becoming transformed. 

Look at it like this: there are some teachings which can be 
learned even if we remain as we are. One doesn’t need to transform 
oneself in order to learn mathematics or history or something like 
that. The person can remain the same and his learning will go on 
accumulating. That person’s inner being doesn’t need to undergo any 
transformation: he may remain the same and just go on accumulating 
knowledge. No inner revolution is required in order to become a 
historian or a mathematician or a scientist. 

But religion is an entirely different matter. In religion a 
transformation is needed before the knowing can be acquired. Unless 
you change, you cannot understand) you will have to be transformed in 
order to understand. Unless the transformation is of your inner being, 
intellectual accumulations will not do,- they become a deception, a 
self-deception. That is why it is better to remain ignorant instead of 
deceiving yourself with a false assumption of knowledge, because 
the ignorant person is at least humble, the learned person becomes 
egotistical and arrogant. The ignorant person at least feels the pain 

I 3 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

of emptiness in himself and tears flow from his eyes, but the learned 
person is just puffed up, his tears have dried up and his thirst has 
faded away. Even false water is capable of satisfying one’s thirst. 

We have all had dreams of this kind: you are actually very thirsty, 
and then you dream that you are drinking water and your thirst is 
quenched. In this way your sleep is not disrupted. Dreams are only 
created to support your sleep. If you think that dreams disturb your 
sleep, then you are unaware of the science of dreams. If you think 
that if you don’t have dreams your sleep will be deeper, then you are 
mistaken. You will not even be able to sleep if you don’t have dreams. 

Actually, dreams simply support your sleep. Whenever your sleep 
is about to be disrupted, a dream will come to deceive you and help 
your sleep to continue. You are thirsty, but if you don’t have a dream 
that you are drinking water at a riverbank your sleep will have to be 
interrupted. Thirst is such a compulsive thing. But you create a dream 
that you are at the bank of a river, or taking a bath in a lake and 
drinking to your satisfaction. You have this dream and your thirst is 
quenched, it is not correct to say quenched, rather it appears to be 
quenched, and so the sleep continues. You are hungry, so you dream 
that you are invited to a feast in the royal palace and therefore your 
sleep is not broken. You have repressed your sexual urge - now it 
arises in you in a dream. Dreams provide beautiful women even to 
beggars.. .and your sleep continues. 

Just as we quench our thirst with imagined water in dreams, the 
same also happens in our so-called waking state. The Upanishad 
says that our awake state is also just a dream. In that dream state 
we are hiding our ignorance by accumulating false knowledge, by 
learning and memorizing it. Thus our sleep is not disrupted and our 
worldly affairs can continue in the same way as our sleep continues 
in the night. 

Just as one awakens from sleep and the consciousness enters into 
another dimension, in the same way, when a person awakens from the 

I 4 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

sleep called "the world," sanyas happens and the consciousness enters 
into another realm. Sanyas means that now one no longer chooses to 
function in the world like a somnambulist, now one simply wants to 
live consciously. 

If by listening to these discourses on the Upanishad you just 
become more knowledgeable, then 1 have committed a mistake by 
speaking. I have become your enemy. If with these discourses you 
now set out on the journey of self-revolution, then what I have said 
has been beneficial and good for you. 

What I will say can become a poison, an absolute poison, if you 
turn it into a subject for your discussion, as food for your intellect 
and a protection for your sleep. What 1 will say can also become 
nectar if you do not make it food for the intellect, if instead it 
develops into a determination, an energy with the potential to 
transform your heart. It will all depend on you what you do with 
this Sarvasar Upanishad. If you return from here just having learned 
a few more things it will not be good, it would have been better 
had you not come here at all. If you return from here having gained 
some more information, some more knowledge, then your coming 
and going has been utterly useless. 

No, I have no intention or desire to add more information 
to your store of knowledge. Rather, I would like you to return a 
little transformed, a little changed; 1 would like it that your vision 
changes, not your memory; that your understanding grows, not your 
knowledge. I would like YOU to grow, not your intellect. 

How can that which is your real being grow - not your knowledge, 
but your very being? That is why I said that this Upanishad is 

To encounter truth, even a little bit, is not a game,- it is dangerous, 
because truth will not allow you to remain as you are. It will change, 
demolish, destroy and renew you. It will give you a new birth. 
Certainly there is pain in the birth, but without pain how can there be 

I 5 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

a new birth? And when there is so much pain for a mother in giving 
birth to another being, there will be much more pain in giving birth 
to one’s own self. A mother carries the baby inside her womb for 
only nine months,- we have carried ourselves within our wombs for 
innumerable lives. 

For so many lives we have remained only a womb, only a seed, for 
eternity we have carried ourselves in our own wombs. We have not 
been born yet! It is as if a butterfly has been enclosed in its cocoon 
for many, many lives: neither has the cocoon broken open, nor has the 
butterfly flown - it has never spread its wings in the open sky. And we 
are closed within ourselves in the same way. 

This Upanishad is about the science which can break that shell. 
We have taken this shell to be our life, although it is not even the 
beginning of birth. What life does a seed have? Certainly the seed 
is there, but is it life? Life is manifested in the tree. What is the life 
of a seed? — the seed is only a possibility, merely a hope, a future, its 
present is nothing at all. It is only a potentiality, but it is not life. 

What we call life is only a potentiality, a seed in its shell. The 
tree has life - it spreads in the open sky reaching to touch the sun, it 
spreads its branches to touch the stars and the moon. Flowers bloom 
on it and the birds make their nests in it, there are songs, there are 
storms - the mighty winds, the sunshine and the rains, the struggles 
and the challenges of death. Moment to moment there is life. What 
life is there for the seed? The seed is only an embryo. 

We are also seeds. And there is much more pain to go through, 
there is much more pain ahead. We all want bliss, but without any 
pain. That is why we never attain it. Who does not wish for bliss? 
Who is not hungry for happiness, and who is not a seeker of bliss? 
Our each and every fiber asks for bliss, each and every breath longs for 
bliss. Everybody desires the same, yet bliss does not happen because 
nobody is ready to pay the price for it. We want to avoid the pain. We 
are like a mother who wants to avoid having labor pains. 

I 6 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

If not today, then perhaps tomorrow, there will no longer be any 
delivery pain for mothers all over the world,- it will be possible to give 
birth to a child without any pain. It has already become possible. But 
the day will never come when a person will enter into the rebirth of 
his own soul, when he will give birth to his own being, without going 
through birth pangs. 

And there is another interesting thing, another truth, which people 
around the world who are trying to make childbirth painless will only 
realize later on. It often happens that we only come to realize the 
implications of something when it is already out of our hands, and 
the truth is that a mother who gives birth to her child without any 
pain will also be deprived of certain depths of her motherhood. The 
mother giving birth to a baby without any pain will lose the depth, 
the intensity of her motherhood. If the baby is born without pain, the 
mother too will not be born,- she will be deprived of motherhood, she 
will not become a mother, because when a baby is born with pain, 
that pain becomes a valley, and beside that valley rises the peak of 

When we avoid the valleys, we are also avoiding the peaks. If 
we want to remove the valleys near the Himalayas and preserve 
the peaks, or preserve Mount Everest, we are mad, we don’t know 
anything about the logic of life. Peaks are there only because of the 
valleys. In fact, the peaks and the valleys are interconnected. 

But man commits the same mistakes again and again. Man thinks 
that if all the pains and miseries of life are eliminated then there will 
be much happiness. But it is a strange fact that when all the pain and 
miseries are gone, we also come to know that there is no happiness left 
anywhere either, because they are interrelated. That is why the rich 
man often becomes more unhappy than the poor man,- the affluent 
societies become more distressed than the poor societies. 

This is the problem in the West today. Now they have put an end 
to most of the pain and misery which are still the cause of so much 

I 7 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

suffering in the East. They have destroyed all those miseries. They 
have made enormous efforts in the hope that the day would come 
when there would be no misery and only happiness would remain. 
And the miseries have ended, but simultaneously they discovered 
that happiness had also disappeared; the valleys disappeared but 
the peaks also disappeared. The nights are no more, but with them 
the days too have disappeared. We separated all the thorns from the 
rosebush, but while we were busy separating the thorns we looked 
up and found that the flowers had also been cleared away. They had 
existed together with the thorns, they were interrelated. 

Someday it may become possible for babies to be delivered 
without pain, but it will never be possible for man to attain a new life 
without pain. It cannot happen, and it has a reason. The reason is that 
whatever we have been up to now has to be discarded to create space 
for the new. 

A mother’s trouble in giving birth to a baby is not that she will 
be destroyed, her trouble is in the shock that something completely 
new is separating from her, is becoming free of her. But when you 
give birth to your own self you are not giving birth to something 
separate from you, you are doing double work. You are eliminating 
yourself and at the same time the elimination is happening, in the 
same proportion, a new life is beginning to unfold. 

That is why I said that the teachings of this Upanishad are 
dangerous — you have to be ready for the pains of inner revolution. 
The sage’s first sutra is related to the fear of that pain. Try to 
understand it. 

Aum. May the divine protect us both. 

Why this prayer? Why is this sage, in the very beginning of the 
Upanishad, praying to the divine for protection? Do you think that 
he had no roof on his hut? Do you think that he had no bread to eat 

I 8 | 

and was dying of hunger, or that he had no clothes to wear? What is it 
that he wants to protect? What is it that he wishes to have protected? 
And that, too, in the very beginning! The very first statement is 
concerning protection. 

The journey the sage is about to begin on is that of death, because 
only after death does a new life begin. "This much is certain: I will die. 
But it is not certain whether I will be reborn — that is unknown." So 
he says, "Protect me." He is praying to the divine that, "I am setting 
out for the unknown, the danger is very obvious, death is apparent." 
The seed only sees its death - how can it see the tree that is to be 
born? The seed will vanish, it has to die, this much is apparent. But 
how could the seed imagine that there will be a tree and that flowers 
will bloom someday? The songs which will echo through the tree, 
the music of the flute that will be played under the tree, the gusts of 
wind which will rustle through the leaves — how could the seed know 
all this beforehand? What idea could it have of the coming spring? 
What idea could it have of the raindrops that will fall upon the tree? 
The only thing the seed knows is that it will die,- this much is known, 
all the rest is unknown,- hence this prayer: 

Aum. May the divine protect us both. 

The master and the disciple... This is even more interesting, that 
the prayer is for both of them - for the disciple and for the master 
as well. Had it been only for the disciple it would have been easy to 
understand - but it is for the master also! This feels a little odd. If the 
prayer was for the disciple who is here to learn, who has just begun 
the journey, who is just about to launch his boat into the unknown, 
it would be understandable. He might pray for protection, for safety. 
But why pray for the master? What is this statement, "both of us"? 

There is a reason for it, and it is that the relationship of master and 
disciple is so deep that if one drowns the other will also drown, then 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

neither one will be saved. This relationship is so intimate that there 
is no other relationship in the world as intimate as this - neither that 
of the husband and wife, neither that of the mother and son, neither 
of brothers nor of friends. This relationship between the two is so 
intimate that if one drowns the other will also drown. That is why the 
sage prays: "Protect us both" - the disciple and the master. 

There are also some deeper insights in this statement. The sage is 
also saying that being a master doesn’t mean that he cannot drown, 
that he cannot go astray. This statement requires our attention. Being 
a master doesn’t mean that he cannot drown. In fact, if there is a 
state where one cannot falter, cannot go astray, cannot get lost in 
the darkness, it means that one is almost dead. In life there is always 
the possibility of going astray - always. That is the only meaning of 
being alive. Even a buddha could take a wrong step - that he does not 
take it is another matter,- that he will not take a wrong step, that is 
another matter; that he has never taken a wrong step, that is another 
matter - but the possibility is there. 1 say it again: his steps never go 
wrong, they have never gone wrong. There is no historical evidence 
that a buddha ever took a wrong step. But even a buddha in his prayer 
would say, "Protect me." A mistake is possible. And it is strange that 
one who prays like this never goes wrong, and one who does not pray 
like this is sure to go wrong, because there is an ego, and that is the 
original mistake. 

That is why the sage begins: "Protect us both" - the master and 
the disciple. The prayer of a disciple is very ordinary, but with a 
master joining in it becomes extraordinary. And we call that person 
a master who has no ego about being a master. One who has no ego 
about being a master is a real master, and the one who has an ego 
about being a master is not even qualified to be a disciple. 

This prayer is expressing that the sage does not have any such 
notion that he does not need protection - that "I have known, I have 
attained, I have reached. I am helping others to reach. Why would I 

I 10 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

need protection?" He has no such notion,- he prays, "Protect both of 

And this unique humbleness is the secret of his being a master. 
We can trust that this man can tell us profound things, we can trust 
that if we even follow this man blindfolded we can reach the goal, that 
even if we follow this man with closed eyes we can reach the goal. But 
if we follow the so-called gurus, even with our eyes open and very 
intelligently, we will fall into a ditch and nowhere else. 

A master is one who is not even aware of his individual existence. 
Such an emptiness can only be full of prayerfulness, there is no other 
way. There is no way to be otherwise. 

... protect us both,- 

May it care for us both. 

It seems that protection is not enough: care is also needed. Does 
protection not also include care? No, protection is an altogether 
spiritual phenomenon. So far, only this much has been prayed for: 
"We are going into the unknown." The disciple of course does not 
know, and the master says that he does not know either. 

These must have been wonderful people, because to be a master, 
first you have to claim that you know, otherwise who will accept you 
as a master? It is difficult to get even a single disciple if a master does 
not claim that he knows. But this master says, "I too do not know 
anything.. .protect me. We have set out towards the unknown, we are 
sailing across an ocean without a map and that there is even another 
shore on the other side has only been seen in dreams, in visions. And 
this too is only a longing,- it is unknown whether or not the other 
shore exists. We are leaving this shore which we have known up to 
now, and we are traveling towards that which we do not know at all." 

That the disciple should be praying is perfectly acceptable, but 
the master also says, "Protect me." The master must know the other 

I 11 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

shore! This is a little complex. In fact the name of the other shore is 
"the unknown." The very meaning of the other shore is that which 
is never known,- whatsoever we may know, it still remains unknown. 

No, the unknown can still be known someday, but the unknowable, 
no matter how much we know, will still remain unknown,- whatsoever 
we may recognize, even then it remains unrecognizable. It is 
embraced, still it remains untouched. We discover it, touch it, yet our 
hands remain empty. One knows it, yet the ego of "knowing" is not 
created within. 

That is why the master says, "Protect me too." And it is right to 
ask for protection: the journey is unknown, the path is unknown, the 
other shore is unknown and the destination is unclear. In the next 
sutra he says: 

May it care for us both. 

Why? Care belongs only to the physical level. But there is a 
reason for this prayer, and the reason is that whosoever starts seeking 
truth drops the ego trip of feeling that he himself is responsible for 
his body. Anyone who thinks, "I earn my bread, I build my house, my 
clothes are mine, I maintain my body and if I don’t maintain all this, 
everything will fall apart," lives in stupidity, and such a person may do 
very well in this world but he cannot move towards truth. 

That is why the sage says, "You provide for us also, because from 
now on we will no longer be the doer, from now on we cannot even 
have the feeling that we are the least responsible for ourselves." 

But we are strange people: not only do we think we take care of 
ourselves, we even assume that we take care of others. 

This sage says, "Now our welfare is in your hands,- now you care 
for us. We will live as you keep us. If you protect us it is okay, if you 
destroy us then that too is okay,- now your will is our life. Now we 
drop even the feeling of being a doer." 

I 12 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

To drop the feeling of being a doer is precious, because it helps on 
the journey. In fact anyone who is attached to feeling like a doer has 
his boat tied to this shore and he cannot proceed towards the other 
shore. All anchors are to be removed from this shore,- even a single 
anchor to this shore is dangerous. To think, "1 earn and 1 maintain 
myself," is enough to create an anchor. 

The sage says: "Our care also. 

May it care for us both. 

Together may we strive. 

There is the knowledge which a teacher passes on to a student, 
as is done in the universities and colleges — knowledge which is an 
accumulation of the known. The teacher knows and the student 
does not,- the teacher passes this knowledge on to the student. The 
teacher gives it, and the student takes it. This we know very well. 
Such knowledge is like an object, like money - it is in my hand, 1 
hand it over to you. The father has the money, he gives it to his 
son,- the teacher has the knowledge, he gives it to the student; it is a 
transfer. But there exists a knowledge which is not transferable. This 
knowledge the master does not give, he cannot give,- there is no way 
to give it. But if both of them endeavor together it may be transmitted 
to the disciple. Try to understand the difference. 

There is the knowledge we all know, which is given; one gets it, one 
gives it. 1 know, you do not know,- 1 give it to you, then you will also 
know it. Certainly that knowledge is of words, but such knowledge 
will be superficial. That which can be given through words will not be 
deeper than the words themselves. It will carry the weight which a 
word carries, it will have the same value. It is not necessary for me to 
know that which I give to you,- someone gave it to me and I give it to 
you, you will give it to someone else. 

So the ignorant are also engaged in this give and take business 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

of knowledge, they do it a lot. And when knowledge is circulated 
very fast, it appears that society is becoming very knowledgeable. 
We are living on such knowledge in this century because knowledge 
is circulating very fast. Those who know economics understand what 
this means. If we have one thousand rupees and everyone keeps 
them in their pockets, they will remain one thousand. But if it starts 
circulating -1 take ten rupees from you, you take from him, he gives it 
to so and so — hundreds of thousands of rupees worth of transactions 
can happen through the original one thousand rupees. Circulation! 
The economists say that money must continue to circulate just like 
blood in the body, otherwise it diminishes. Money seems to decrease 
if it is not circulated. The more money circulates in a society, the 
richer it seems. 

Mohammedans remain poor because, in the very beginning, 
Islam adopted the idea that taking interest on money is a sin. Now, if 
taking interest on money is a sin the circulation of money is stopped, 
the flow of money is blocked. So Mohammedans have remained 
poor in this world because they took the vow not to take interest on 
money. If you do not take interest the money will be blocked - how 
can it flow? It flows with the help of interest; it travels from one 
pocket to another pocket, and one rupee circulating becomes one 
thousand rupees. 

America is the richest country because there money moves fast. 
If money moves fast, even the poor appear to be rich,- if it doesn’t 
move, even the rich are poor. Many rich people in this country are 
quite poor, their money doesn’t move at all. They are sitting on their 
safes. If their safes were removed from under them, it would not make 
any difference to their feeling rich as long as they did not know that 
the safes had been removed. Just the idea that they are sitting on 
their safes is enough to make them feel that they are rich people. But 
if money doesn’t circulate then even the rich person would be poor, 
and if it circulates even the poor appear to be rich. 

I 14 | 

That is how it is with knowledge: it circulates fast. We have 
universal education,- now there is education in the whole world. And 
knowledge moves fast: the first one passes it to the second one, 
that one gives it to the third, the third passes it on to still another,- 
everyone goes on passing knowledge to everyone else. There appears 
to be a great deal of knowledge, but actually there is not. 

The sage is not talking about that knowledge which someone can 
give you. The sage says: Together may we strive — "We only need that much 
blessing. We will live together, we will meditate together, we will pray 
together, we will worship together, we will move together; we will sit 
together in silence, in words, in thoughts. We will be together in the 
longing for you, in our efforts to attain you. We will dream together, 
we will sing together, we will be silent together,- together we will look 
at the sun, together we will look at the stars in the sky at night. We 
will be together." 

This is called satsane): we will be together. Perhaps that which 
cannot be given directly can happen in such a togetherness,- that 
which cannot be given directly can be transmitted silently, that which 
cannot be said through words may descend in silence, that which 
cannot be given may be transmitted while living together. 

Bodhidharma went to China from India fourteen hundred years 
ago. One disciple, Hui Neng, was with Bodhidharma for many 
years and he had asked many times, "When will you give me... 
when will you impart that wisdom? When will that moment come 
when my bowl is filled? I have been following you for many years 
and time is passing by, life is uncertain." Bodhidharma would laugh 
and say nothing. 

Slowly, slowly, Hui Neng stopped asking. There was no sense in 
asking — this man would only laugh. And one day the phenomenon 
happened. Hui Neng woke up at midnight and shook Bodhidharma: 
"At least you could have informed me before giving it. And what a 
time you chose - at midnight, and while I was sleeping!" 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

Bodhidharma laughed again and he said, "Be silent and go to 
sleep." Again he laughed as he had laughed before. 

Again and again Hui Neng would ask, "Tell me something! How 
did you give it to me? How did I get it? You should have told me 
earlier, you should have said something! You have filled me, yet you 
didn’t even inform me." 

Bodhidharma said, "I also didn’t know when it would happen." 

This transmission, when will it happen? Nobody knows. "But we 
strive together." If we go together, move together and live together, 
it will happen. If an unlit candle is put near one that is lit, it cannot be 
known when a gust of wind will bring the flame near the unlit candle, 
when the flame will jump to the other candle. This is the way, this is 
how the transmission happens. 

So the sage says: Together may we strive . Only then, perhaps, it may 
happen, that that which cannot be given may be given. But for that 
happening both are needed: one who knows and the other who does 
not know,- one who is called the master and one who is called a disciple 
- they agree to come close. 

One has not to learn from the master, it is enough just to be with 
him. Learning is easy, but being together is difficult. Learning can 
be done while standing at a distance,- coming closer is not necessary. 
But a deep intimacy is required in order to be together; an inner 
opening is required, a trust, a deep reverence, a love, a madness, a 
capacity to regard someone as closer than one’s own self. Then the 
transmission happens. 

If the unlit candle is afraid, keeping a distance, not coming close 
to the lit candle and if somehow, when the flame comes close to it, it 
moves farther away and is afraid, then it becomes difficult. So the sage 
says: Together may we strive. 

He does not say that only the disciple is to make the effort. That 
would have seemed appropriate, wouldn’t it? - that would have been 
enough. All so-called gurus ask the disciple to work hard, to make 

I 16 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

an effort. No so-called guru says that we should strive together - 
because it is not only that the disciple is to be near the master, it is 
more important for the master to be available to the disciple. Even if 
the unlit candle comes very close but the lit candle is conceited and 
arrogant and not willing to move with the gust of the wind, then too 
nothing will happen. 

If a master feels himself to be a master then nothing will happen, 
because even though he is ready to give, he is not ready to be together 
with the disciple, and it cannot be given without being together. 

That is why, when the old seekers went in search, the place 
where they lived with the master was called the gurukul, the family 
of the master. This was the master’s family; the seeker just became a 
member of the family. He became one, joined with the family. But this 
closeness is two-sided; every closeness is two-sided. That is why the 
master says: "We strive together, make effort, work hard, meditate 

This is a great sadham, a great spiritual discipline for the master 
also. Every person who knows cannot be a master. Try to understand 
it. Many people in this world know, but they cannot help others to 
know. To know is not so difficult. 

One day, someone came to Buddha and asked him, "You have had 
ten thousand monks with you for years and you have been teaching 
them, leading them on the path of sadhana, meditation. How many 
have attained to your state? How many have become buddhas?" 
Naturally, it is a relevant question. It is the test of a buddha to see 
how many buddhas he has created. 

Buddha answered that many of them have attained to buddhahood. 

The man said, "No one seems to be a buddha." 

Buddha replied, "Because they are not masters." 

To become awakened is one thing and to help others to awaken is 
quite another. It is not necessary that the awakened one always helps 
others to awaken, because if the awakened one is to awaken the other 

I 17 | 

he has to descend from his heights and stand with the other in his 
dark valley,- he has to be near the people who are groping, taking their 
hand in his own hand. Many times he has to walk a little distance with 
them on their path where there is nothing but hell. So if he walks a 
little distance with you now, holding your hand, only then will there 
be a possibility of a trust arising in you that tomorrow, if he invites 
you on his path, then you will be willing to accompany him. 

The master has to walk with the disciple, so that the disciple may 
walk with the master. And many times the master has to walk on a 
path where he should not have gone, he has to come close to the one 
whom he wants to change. That is why the sage says: 

Together may we strive. 

May our knowing be brilliant. 

There is a spiritual discipline to know the truth, and there is quite 
another for transmitting that truth; they are different, totally different. 

The Jainas have differentiated between the two. A kevali is one 
who has attained to the supreme wisdom,- a tirtbankara is one who 
has attained to the supreme wisdom and who is also a teacher, also a 
master — he is called a tirtbankara. There is no other difference between 
a tirtbankara and a kevali. A kevali has attained to wisdom, he has the 
ultimate understanding, but he is not a master. He cannot transfer, he 
cannot give it to others. He does not know how to give it to others. 

Understand it this way. There are only a few people on the earth 
in whose life no poetry ever takes birth. Sometime or other a lyric 
echoes inside, takes birth in everyone. But there are very few poets. 
Many people have felt the murmuring of a song, but this does not 
make them musicians. Even if music is born inside you, it may be that 
you will not be able to sing it out loud. That is why, when listening 
to poetry, you feel that this is the poetry which should have come 
through me, this is the song I should have sung; this is the same tune 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

which echoed within me, but 1 could not produce it. Looking at some 
painting you feel that you also wanted to paint it, but someone else 
painted it. In fact when you like a painting, it only means that if you 
could have, you would have painted it — it represents you, but you 
couldn’t do it. 

Many times truth is attained, the ultimate wisdom unfolds, 
takes birth. But then how to communicate it to others? How to 
communicate it? How to convey it to others? 

To be a master is a different matter. Only one who is ready to 
strive again along with the disciple can be a master. Only one who 
agrees to walk again along with the disciple from the very first steps, 
who agrees to start with the ABCs again, who can take the hand of the 
disciple and start from where he himself has no need to start can be 
a master. He who is standing at the destination and has the courage 
to again take the first step with the disciple, only he can become a 

That is why the sage prays: 

. * 

Together may we strive. 

May our knowing be brilliant. 

He continues to pray for both: May our knowing be brilliant. 

It is strange, but often it happens that the master himself 
understands many things for the first time while teaching it to the 
disciple — for the first time! Many times, helping others understand is 
the easiest way to understand oneself. Many times truth is experienced 
inside, but the experiencer himself does not fully understand what has 
happened. What happened? Did it happen? For seven days, Buddha 
kept brooding: What has happened? 

When one faces truth for the first time, one is dumbfounded. One 
can see all, but nothing is comprehended; everything is understood, 
but even then nothing is understood in detail. Nothing is grasped. 

I 19 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

What has happened? That which existed until yesterday exists no 
more,- that which never existed is present; that which was believed to 
be real has become a dream,- that which was unknown even in dream 
is so real before one’s eyes. The one who started the search has 
disappeared and the one who has attained to this truth is unknown, 
is unrecognizable. 

When Meister Eckhart experienced samadbi for the first time, he 
had asked two questions. The first was: What is happening? and the 
second was: To whom is it happening? 

One of his disciples was near him. The disciple said, "At least this 
much I can tell you: that it has happened to you. So why do you ask to 
whom it has happened?" 

Eckhart replied, "You do not know. The man who started on this 
search has disappeared in this happening, and the one to whom it has 
happened is as much a stranger as is this happening." 

Many times, what has happened only becomes clear when the 
master is teaching someone. 

So the sage prays: May our knowing be brilliant. "May our knowing be 
bright. May our knowing become sharp, may the flame of our wisdom 
shine; may it go on shining." 

The moment never comes when one can pray to the divine: 
"Now it is enough." The moment never comes when one prays to 
existence: "Enough! Now if you want you can dull my intelligence, 
that will be fine." No, such moments never come. Wisdom 
is a sword with a blade which can always be made more sharp. 
Continuous sharpening and still...still, something remains to be 
sharpened. This is the endless, this is the boundless. This is why 
the sage prays: 

May our knowing be brilliant. 

In fact the master says that there is no reason to believe that he 

I 20 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

has become a wise man, there is still more wisdom ahead; there is 
still ignorance. Perhaps the one who knows can see more ignorance 
than the one who does not know, and so he can say that there is still 
ignorance. But now don’t misunderstand that he really is ignorant. 
Don’t think that this man actually needs to ask for knowledge and 
brilliance. But this prayer is right and it is symbolic. It conveys that 
a wise man is always humble, and that he does not hesitate to pray. 

Only the weak are afraid to pray. A weak person is not even 
courageous enough to ask. Even in front of the divine, from which 
everything can be received, he stands as if he has everything. Even at 
the door of the divine he keeps his vanity intact and goes away hiding 
his begging bowl behind him for fear that it might be seen. 

But the one who knows also knows that the knowing is not a static 
phenomenon. It is not a limited happening like a pond. Knowing is like 
a river continuously flowing — nonstop. Knowing goes on endlessly 
growing - it goes on and on. This is the grace of wisdom, that it has 
no end. If wisdom had an end, it would become dead. The flower of 
wisdom goes on blooming forever. Just understand it like this: that 
more and more petals go on opening, and the moment never arrives 
when its flowering is complete. The bud of wisdom doesn’t bloom 
and fade, it remains always a bud, flowering. No matter how much it 
flowers, it still remains a bud. 

May we hold no envy. 

On this journey towards wisdom, why is it necessary to say that 
we should not envy anyone? Between the point where this sutra 
started and the point where it reaches, this appears to be irrelevant, 
sudden and abrupt. This is a search for truth. The journey is unknown. 
Brilliance of intelligence is needed and wisdom is also needed, an 
awakened consciousness is needed - that is all okay ; the master 
and the disciple should endeavor together,- that is okay - but then 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

suddenly the master says: May we bold no envy. What is its relevance? 
Why is it mentioned? Why is he saying not to envy anyone? Try to 
understand it. 

The statements of a sage are never irrelevant, even if they appear 
to be so. It may look as if the sage has taken a jump from one place 
to another, and with no link in between. There are many occasions 
in the Upanishads where it appears as if the sutra started from one 
idea and concluded somewhere else,- there is no link in between, no 
relationship. Even then don’t jump to conclusions, because the sages, 
the seers, know some inner link which is invisible to you, they are 
aware of bridges which are invisible to you. They know some inner 
relevance which has not penetrated your intelligence even today. 

May we hold no envy. 

In fact when a man begins to search for something he is motivated 
by his envy of the other, by his jealousy of the other. Even in the search 
for truth one can be jealous of the other. The desire for knowledge 
can also be based in jealousy and competition with the other. 

A friend of mine came to me eight days ago and he said, "1 am in 
great anguish and anxiety: How can I achieve godliness?" 

I asked him, "What is the reason for this anxiety? Do you have 
a strong urge for the divine and that is why you are in anguish? Do 
you feel pained missing the only meaning in life, the only goal of life? 
Do you feel life is useless unless it is achieved? Have you tasted its 
flavor and that taste is haunting you, pulling you, calling you again 
and again? Have you seen godliness through some window, either 
close by or maybe from a distance, and now you find it difficult to 
forget, and again and again, repeatedly, you remember that opening 
and think of how to reach there?" 

He replied, "No, nothing like that. When you can achieve it, why 
can’t I? When Ramakrishna can achieve it, why can’t I? And when 

I 22 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

Ramana Maharshi can achieve it, then what is wrong with me? I am 
disturbed when 1 listen to you people. I have neither a taste, nor any 
urge, and I am not even sure whether it exists or not!" 

So it may not be visible to you, but the sage’s prayer is correct: 
May we hold no envy. We should not begin our search because of the 
jealousy we hold for others or because we are afraid of lagging behind. 

We are all in competition with each other, not only for a house 
or furniture, but even to realize godliness. If a hundred names were 
removed from the history of mankind we might even forget the idea 
of God. Those hundred persons provoke jealousy in us. One Buddha 
is born and our life is in difficulty If this man has achieved, how can 
1 lag behind? 

So at first we try in every way to deny his achievement,- that is 
our strategy, our self-defense. First, we make every effort to deny his 
achievement. We think, "One day I saw this man looking so angry, 
once I saw him eating delicious food, one day 1 saw this man full of 
ego." First, we console ourselves in every possible way that he has 
not achieved, so that we may avoid this problem of envy or jealousy, 
so that this feeling of competition can be avoided. But a person like 
Buddha does not consider or care about us. He goes on living in his 
own way. 

Then slowly, slowly we get disturbed realizing that he has achieved 
something. We try him in every way, but he does not care. It seems 
that he has got something. We test him by throwing stones at him, 
by giving poison to him, by crucifying him ; we test him in all kinds 
of ways, and then a suspicion grows. One day we feel that yes, he has 
got it. And then immediately our struggle begins to achieve the same. 

It is difficult to conceive that people will begin even the search for 
truth with jealousy, but this is the reality. Even there, jealousy exists. 
We neither tolerate the other being rich, nor being wise. We cannot 
tolerate the feeling that the other has achieved something which we 
have not. 

I 23 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

So the sage prays: May we hold no envy. 

This is not irrelevant, it is very relevant, because someone who 
is searching for truth because of jealousy may reach somewhere, but 
never to the divine. Money can be made because of jealousy, there is 
no problem in that. In fact money can never be made without jealousy. 
Competition is a prerequisite for every achievement in this world, 
and the more poisonous your competition is, the more successful you 
will be. The deeper your jealousy is, the stronger you become. But 
this does not apply to the search for the divine, because someone 
who sees the other as "other," that person cannot realize the divine. 
And one who is not delighted in seeing the wisdom of the other has 
no longing for wisdom as yet. 

There is another type of person too, who, when he meets a 
Buddha, is not even concerned whether Buddha has achieved or not. 
He does not care, does not worry whether this man has achieved 
or not. He isn’t bothered about achieving just because Buddha has 
achieved — no, he is delighted with Buddha’s fragrance, he is touched 
by Buddha’s song; seeing Buddha he becomes convinced, but he is 
not jealous of him. Seeing Buddha he feels assured and he says, "Okay, 
whatever thirst is within me, this same thirst has reached to the ocean 
in this man. Now 1 can follow my thirst with trust." He attains a trust 
after looking at Buddha, a trust that even the impossible is possible, a 
trust that even the faraway truth is very close. Buddhahood is very far 
from him, but Buddha is very near to him also - he can hold Buddha’s 
feet in his hands. And if he can hold Buddha’s feet in his hands, then 
before long buddhahood can also be achieved — he attains that trust. 

Then there is no envy, then there is only a thanksgiving, a gratitude. 
He feels grateful because someone has blossomed; he is reminded of 
his own bud, he is reminded of his own self, and an awareness arises. 
Then the journey has not begun because of jealousy. It is a delightful, 
loving journey unconcerned with the other. 

That is why the sage prays: May we hold no envy. 

I 24 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

If there is no envy, and only one’s own thirst, one can easily reach 
that state where one can say: "Aum, peace, peace, peace," where one 
can say, "Everything is at peace, everything has reached to its ultimate 
rest, everything is bliss." 

This much for the Upanishad sutra... 

Now a few suggestions for tomorrow morning, and our night 
gathering will be over. 

The first suggestion is for all of these days of the meditation camp. 
During the coming seven days you have to live in such a way that 
a minimum amount of life-energy is spent. The minimum has to be 
spent, because our search goes into a dimension where a lot of life- 
energy is needed and, if you unnecessarily waste it, you will have no 
energy for that search. If you burn the oil of your lamp elsewhere, you 
will not be able to light up the flame for the purpose for which you 
came here ; the oil of your lamp must be conserved. 

So for seven days, conserve your energy as much as you can. And 
in order to conserve your energy, close every possible opening of 
your senses because they are the way your energy, your strength will 
be wasted. Keep your eyes closed as much as you can. 

So, tomorrow morning you will get a blindfold, or maybe you have 
one right now. For twenty-four hours, whenever you need to walk, 
remove the blindfold just so that you can see four steps ahead of 
you, which is just enough - not even the fifth step. Walk here only 
looking four steps ahead. As soon as you arrive here, close your eyes 
and cover them totally with the blindfold. For the whole day, starting 
from the morning, the blindfold should remain on your eyes. 

Most of your energy is spent through your eyes,- conserve it 
inside. The energy of the eyes is to be especially conserved, because 
that which we are seeking requires the use of the inner eye, and the 
energy is the same. That which is used for the outer eyes has to be 
used for the inner eye too — the same energy is used. 

That is why we call the sage a seer — one who sees. That is why 

I 25 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

we call that experience darshan, seeing. Your inner eye should receive 
that energy which your outer eyes are receiving, so keep your eyes 
closed. For seven days, let all your energy go inside. Keep your eyes 
closed and remember the whole day that the energy of both your eyes 
is flowing towards the third eye, just between the two outer eyes, 
between the two eyebrows, in the middle of the forehead. Whenever 
you remember, close your eyes, sit silently, and remember that the 
energy of both eyes is flowing towards the third eye between the two 
eyes, in the middle of the eyebrows, flowing from both sides, entering 
into the third eye. Thus your meditation will deepen tremendously. 

As far as possible, keep your ears closed. Don’t hear anything, 
because he who is interested in listening to the inner music should 
avoid outer noises. Otherwise, the inner music is very subtle 
compared to the outside noises and it will be difficult to hear it, so we 
need to tune into it. Put some cotton, or anything you wish, into your 
ears,- keep the ears closed the whole time — they are not needed. At 
the most your ears will be needed for only a few minutes,- otherwise 
there is no need. Do not use your ears except while you are listening 
to me. Keep them closed, and be aware all the time of anything 
which you can hear happening inside — just a remembering: is there 
anything which can be heard inside? Then the energy of your ears will 
start flowing inside and you will be able to hear the inner sounds in 
meditation, and you will be able to see the inner visions in meditation. 

Ears, eyes and your lips. Thirdly, keep your lips closed and speak 
the minimum. It is best if you do not speak at all. Keep silent. You are 
free to choose what you do about your ears and eyes - if you wish 
you can keep your eyes open, and if you wish you can keep your 
ears open, because only you will be missing out - but with your lips 
you are harming others, with your lips you are trespassing, so do not 
speak at all. Hearing and seeing can be your choice. 

Wherever you want to go, whatever you want to do, you can 
do. However, if you have come to meditate, keep your eyes and 

I 26 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

ears closed. If you have accidentally arrived here just by wandering 
around, it is your choice. But even if you have come here accidentally 
you are not allowed to speak, because in speaking you are attacking 
others,- when you are speaking you are harming others, so please do 
not speak at all. 

Many people may have come here because they could not gossip 
in their home towns, or could not find any victims — who will be 
available here. They hope to chat with them. No chatting is allowed 
here. The campus should be completely quiet. Silence should prevail 
in your room, wherever you are,- no singing, no songs, no talking, no 
conversation, nothing of that sort. Keep quiet for seven days. 

You have talked your whole life and what have you gained? After 
seven days, you can do it again for the rest of your life. Or, if you 
intend to have more than one life, you can keep doing it in several 
more lives. But for seven days listen to me and stop talking. Then 
it is possible that you may have a glimpse of silence, of that which 
could not be known through talking. Then with our total energy 
we can go deeply into meditation. So you have to keep these three 
senses closed. 

And now, the fourth thing. We will be using a lot of energy here 
for meditation, so it is better to do a minimum amount of physical 
work outside. Do not go wandering around to see this place or that. 
You will come back tired, and then you will complain that nothing is 
happening in meditation. Come here totally fresh, because you have 
to make much effort here. So do not go anywhere else,- do not go 
sightseeing during these days. 

Whatever time you get after these three sittings, lie down 
somewhere in the shade of a tree, keep resting silently, relax,- maximum 
relaxation and maximum cessation of your external senses. 

Eat very little, because a lot of energy is consumed in digesting 
your food, and it is spent in digesting food which produces nothing 
more than diseases. Take the minimum amount of food, keep the 

I 27 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

stomach light so that the energy can go upwards. The heavier the 
stomach, the lower the energy goes because it has to reach to the 
stomach. This is why you feel sleepy after meals, because the brain 
has to send its energy to the stomach and then the brain becomes 
idle and goes to sleep. That is why, if you are hungry or you are on a 
fast, you can’t sleep at night. The reason is that the energy continues 
flowing upwards and the brain cells keep awake because they are full 
of energy. If energy flows more towards the stomach making an effort 
to be conscious becomes difficult; so eat less. 

You will lose nothing during these seven days with a minimum 
amount of food, and the benefits can be tremendous - it can even be 
helpful for the body. Eat less and eat lightly. You should eat so little 
that you feel as if you have not eaten anything, only that much. So 1 
do not say to stop eating completely, because the person who stops 
eating completely does nothing but think about eating the whole day. 
You should just eat less. 

And it is strange that the people who overeat find it difficult to 
eat less. If you tell them not to eat at all, they are ready to agree. 
The reason for this is that it is always easy to go from one extreme 
to another, it is difficult to stop in the middle. If you are told not to 
eat sweets at all you will say, "Okay 1 will not look at them." But if 
the sweets are there in the dish and you are told to take only two 
spoonfuls, then it gets really difficult trying to control yourself when 
temptation is there. 

Eat, but eat less. 

This is the basic program for the next seven days. 

In the morning there will be kirtan, devotional singing and dancing, 
for fifteen minutes. All of you are to stand up and dance blissfully 
during the kirtan. Blindfolds are to remain on the eyes. You can spread 
out and, with the blindfolds on the eyes, dance, do kirtan delightfully, 
dance blissfully. You are to let yourself go in kirtan blissfully for fifteen 
minutes,- that I will tell you in detail in the morning. 

I 28 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

Then the kirtan will stop and only music will be played for fifteen 
minutes,- you are to continue dancing, dancing freely. After that, for 
thirty minutes, you are to relax like a dead man. That will be the 
morning meditation. Tomorrow morning I will explain to you about 
the noon and night meditations. 

A special experiment has to be added in this camp — to be done 
before you go to sleep. I will explain it to you now, because that has to 
be started from tonight, and that is compulsory. If you do it you will 
create a lot of energy, and that energy will be utilized tomorrow. First, 
I told you to conserve your energy, not to waste it — that is one thing; 
now 1 will tell you the way to create more energy - how to create it. I 
told you not to spend what you have so that it is conserved, and now 
I will tell you the next thing — how to create it. 

Whatever energy a man has is generally spent in daily routines, 
and whatever energy is left, gets accumulated at your sex centre. That 
left-over energy provokes you, pushes you into sexual desire. That is 
why celibacy is easy to practice if you eat less - because that extra 
energy is not produced. Since extra energy is not produced, it does 
not accumulate at the sex centre. But then brahmackarya, celibacy, is a 
deception, it has no meaning. It happens because you are living at a 
lower level with only a minimum amount of energy. If you do not take 
food for thirty days you will lose your interest in the opposite sex. 
Your interest has not ceased because you are a transformed person, 
but because the energy needed for this interest is not now being 
produced. After thirty days, if you eat even for only three days, three 
days of food will destroy what the thirty days of fasting had created; 
you will find yourself back in the same place. 

The first thing is that the extra energy gets accumulated in your 
sex center, and the second thing is that the sex center is the dynamo 
which produces energy in every human being, in every living being. 
The sex center is the machinery within us that creates the energy. If 
you wish, you can create more and more energy with it. But we use 

I 29 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

this machine only to throw out the energy and not to create it. Energy 
created by this center, flowing upwards, becomes kundalini, serpent 
power, the vital force. 

So this night experiment is for the kundalini. And if you do it, 
these seven days will turn into utter bliss for you,- then you will never 
be able to forget it again. 

Tonight, when you go to sleep, and daily, when you lie down on 
your bed after completing everything, when you are ready to go 
to sleep, undress and cover yourself with a blanket or sheet. Lie 
on your back or on your stomach on the bed, whichever way you 
feel more comfortable — you can decide which after experimenting 
for a couple of days. Let your body be loose, close your eyes, 
and bring your attention to the sex center. Imagine that the sex 
center is getting active and energy is moving around it. You must 
have seen whirlpools in the water, water revolving so fast it makes 
a whirlpool. Anything thrown into the whirlpool moves in the 
circle, so feel like that within you — the energy moving fast around 
the sex center. If you throw a flower into it, it will revolve and 
drown in the middle. Imagine it like that. Within three minutes 
vibrations will start within you. 

At first these vibrations will be just like the vibrations during 
lovemaking; the body will vibrate. When it vibrates, let it vibrate 
totally, cooperate with it, help it. Just imagine that you are really 
indulging in lovemaking and the whole body is vibrating. Let the 
whole body vibrate. Your whole body will become hot. 

As soon as you feel that the whole body is vibrating and the 
energy is moving fast at the sex center, let yourself be loose and 
concentrate on one thought: that the energy has started rising 
upwards from the sex center, just like a flame of fire going upwards. 
Bring that energy to the middle of your forehead, between the two 
eyes, between the eyebrows,- you have to take it to the third-eye 
center. This energy will start flowing upwards. You have only to be 

I 30 | 

One Boat, Two Travelers 

aware that the energy has accumulated between the two eyes and it 
has started circulating there. 

Then forget all about the sex center, and go to sleep with your 
attention on the third eye. When you get up in the morning, first feel 
this center between the two eyes and you will find there is a sensation 
of energy moving fast there. You will feel the movement clearly. 

This you have to do every night, for seven days. It will channel 
the extra energy which used to flow into sex to the third eye. The sex 
center will create energy, as much as it can, and all that energy will be 
available to your third eye. In the morning we will experiment on that 
third eye, so to do this experiment at night is a must. 

This will be the experiment for the night. Now we will do kirtan for 
a few minutes. Everyone stand up and dance and participate in kirtan, 
and after that we will disperse. 

I 31 I 

Chapter - 2 

The Inquiry 

What is bondage? Katbam bandbab - what is bondage? Katbam moksbah - 
what is liberation? 

What is vidya, true learning, and what is avidya, false learning? 

What are these five bodies? - the annamay, formed of food,- the 
pranamay, formed of life-energy,- the manomay, formed of psychic- 
energy,- the vic/yanamay, formed of awareness,- the anandamay, formed 
of bliss. 

What is the doer? What is this embodied soul? What are the five 
categories? Who is the one who knows? Who is the witness? Who is 
the one that resides deepest? Who is the knower of all thoughts and 

What is the jeevatma, the individual soul, and what is paramatma, the 
universal soul? What is maya, illusion? 

After the prayer to the divine, the inquiry begins. Inquiry can only 
begin after prayer. Prayerfulness brings the heart into such a space, 
it creates such a receptive and sensitive state of mind, that now the 
inquiry is not just made out of curiosity, it has turned into a longing 
for liberation. Inquiry without prayerfulness is only an intellectual 
game, and someone who inquires without having prayed first has not 
inquired at all. If someone is sitting in the dark with his door closed 

The Inquiry 

inquiring about the sun and about light, he can continue inquiring 
forever but he will never get an answer. 

One of the biggest games of the mind is: when it receives no 
answer, it fabricates some answers in the darkness, never having 
known the sun. Someone will state, "The sun does not exist" — not 
because he knows that the sun does not exist, but because it is easier 
for him to deny what he could not know about than to allow his 
anguish, his state of not knowing, to persist. The anguish disappears 
with the denial; we can then remain contented in our darkness. He 
who has not opened his doors may continue to inquire about the sun 
and about the light, but he will not get an answer. And, not getting 
an answer, he may not even deny the existence of the sun, but may 
instead fabricate an imaginary sun, fabricate his own concept, his own 
notion. And those concepts are just as false as his denial. 

A non-believer standing in the darkness is as untrue as a believer 
standing in darkness. Without knowing the divine, their statements 
about the existence or the nonexistence of the divine are meaningless. 
Both statements are meaningless. And it is really interesting that great 
disputes and discussions go on in the darkness between these two 
groups who do not know anything at all. 

Ignorance is full of disputes. Ignorance does not know, yet it is very 
voluble. Disputes can go on, doctrines can be established... In fact 
doctrines can only be created in darkness,- in the light there can be no 
beliefs. The light is enough; beliefs are not needed. All doctrines are 
born in darkness, since where there is light none are needed. Where 
truth is revealed, words have vanished; and where truth is everything, 
doctrines serve no purpose. Beliefs are a substitute, a compensation,- 
when truth is not known, we create beliefs and install them in place 
of the truth. 

Right inquiry begins with prayerfulness. When 1 say this, I mean 
that someone who wants to know the sun should at least fulfill one 
condition: that he should open the door of his house. If there is a 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

longing to know the sun, he should at least open his doors so that 
if the sun wants to answer, it can answer. The sun has tremendous 
energy,- even so it will not break down the doors to enter into your 
house. The sun will not even knock on your door. 

In this world truth never trespasses on one s life, it never meddles 
in one’s life. Truth never brings any slavery into one’s life, it never 
brings any bondage. That is why truth is freedom. Truth never 
imposes itself forcibly without your will. Unless you are ready, truth 
will stand waiting without knocking at your doors. Your readiness, 
only your heartfelt invitation, can become truth’s arrival. 

But what is the point of your invitation if your door is not open? 
You should stand and wait at the door for the guest whom you have 
invited. That is why the Upanishad begins with prayer. 

Prayerfulness is the way to open the door to the heart. If an inquiry 
is without prayerfulness, then it is initiated more by your doubts and 
not created by the search,- then the inquiry is not for the sake of the 
search, it is to raise more doubts. One who has set out only to doubt, 
his doubting becomes unhealthy, it is sick. 

And it is not that someone who opens his door with a prayerful 
heart loses the right to doubt - in fact only he has the right to doubt, 
because now doubt is only a part of the longing for the solution; now 
doubt is creative, not destructive,- now doubt is only to find the way 
to remove all the hurdles,- now the questions are there to get close to 
the answer. Now the inquiry is not the game of a diseased mind, now 
this doubt is not the disease of a sick mind, it is now the search of a 
healthy person. 

Trustful doubt - these words appear to be very contradictory, but 
if we try to understand them from a different angle it will be clear. Try 
to understand "doubtful trust." 

Even when we trust, it is full of doubt. Even if we put our trust in 
someone it is full of doubt,- doubt is the undercurrent. In fact we trust 
only because inside there is doubt and we want to suppress it. And 


The Inquiry 

when doubt is inside and trust is on the surface, trust will be weak, 
because the inner is more powerful and the outer, the superficial, will 
be feeble,- that which is on the periphery will be weak, and that which 
is at the center of the heart will be powerful. 

So doubt is inside and trust is just imposed on the outside like 
clothes. Just as clothes do not eliminate your nakedness, they only 
hide it, similarly, trust imposed on the outside like clothes does not 
destroy doubt, it only hides it. 

The opposite is also possible - what I call "trustful doubt." 
Trust is there in the heart, doubt is only on the circumference. 
That doubt becomes a part of the journey to strengthen the 
trust, because how can someone who has not doubted, trust? But 
actually he is full of trust. 

Maulingaputta, a disciple of Buddha, said to him, "I ask you, 
not because 1 doubt you but because I doubt myself; I ask you, not 
because 1 doubt what you say but because I doubt whether 1 have 
understood it rightly. I ask not because I doubt your achievement, I 
ask you because I doubt my footsteps — and the journey is very long 
and the dream so vast. I have doubts about my own footsteps. I ask 
you so that my trust gets strengthened, I ask you so that my trust 
becomes profound." 

Whenever one asks prayerfully, the doors of his heart are 
open ; he does not come with doubt, he comes with a question. 
Questions can have answers, but doubts can have no answers, 
because someone who wants to doubt will go on doubting every 
answer you give him. 

Doubt is an infinite regression: you give an answer, he doubts it; 
you give another, he doubts it; doubt is his basic premise. Whatever 
you say, he doubts it. Then there is no way. But if doubt is only a 
part of the search, just a methodology - a method, not an end, not a 
solution, not a goal - if doubt is not the premise, but inquiry is, doubt 
is very helpful. 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

So, trustful doubt, and prayerful inquiry. 

The very first question asked in the Sarvasar Upanishad is: 

What is bondage? 

Consider this. People usually ask whether God exists. What is 
God? What is liberation? Does liberation happen or not? What is 
the soul? Does it exist or not? People begin from where they should 
end. A diseased man is asking, "What is health?" But an intelligent 
person, if he is ill, will ask, "What is this illness?" The diagnosis will 
start with the illness. The first question raised in this Upanishad is: 
What is bondage? That is the disease, that is the sickness with which we 
are bound. 

Someone is in a prison, tied with chains, enslaved, and is asking, 
"What is freedom?" He has never tasted freedom,- he has been in 
chains since he was born, always in chains. He has found himself in 
chains for as long as he has been aware of himself. His awareness and his 
bondage are both joined together, and he is asking, "What is freedom?" 
Perhaps he would not be able to understand, he has not asked the right 
question. He should only be asking that which he can understand. 

An intelligent seeker is a person who only asks the question 
whose answer he will be able to understand. And if he understands 
one answer, he will also be able to understand other answers. 

That is why the first question is: What is bondage? - "How am I 
bound?" - because the person who has always been in bondage does 
not know what bondage is. Even to recognize it as bondage you have 
to have had some experience of freedom. If you are handcuffed, you 
will realize that you are handcuffed. But if a child is born in chains, will 
he ever be able to recognize the chains as chains? They will appear to 
be a part of his body. And if you try to break his chains he will cry and 
scream, "Are you trying to kill me?" These chains are his life. They are 
not separate from him, they are his being. 

I 36 I 

The Inquiry 

And that is how we are. As long as we have existed, as long as we 
have known that we are, our awareness of our existence and of our 
prison have been joined. We have never experienced freedom. We 
have never flown in the sky, our wings have never opened in the open 
sky, we have only known them to be forever closed and unused. We 
have never known that our wings are meant for flying. We were born 
and brought up in a prison,- this prison has been our very life. 

So the right inquiry would begin with What is bondage? But we don’t 
even know anything about slavery! We are deep in our slavery, we are 
slaves. How then can one recognize what slavery is? If a man is born 
and he suffers from a headache for the whole of his life, he will be 
unable to distinguish between the head and the ache, because he has 
always known his head with an ache. 

Simone Weil, a great woman thinker of the West, has written that 
for thirty years she did not know what a headache was. Not because 
she never had a headache, but because she had always had a headache. 

She never knew that the head could exist without a headache,- she 
could not distinguish between the head and the headache. At the age 
of thirty, when her headache was cured for the first time, then she 
came to know that it was a headache and not the head itself. 

You cannot separate yourself from that which you grow up with. 
That is why you are unable to know your body as separate from yourself 
— because you grow up with it. Hence the identity, the oneness with 
the body. That is why you do not know your mind as separate from 
yourself: because one grows up with it, identification happens. 

Here the sage and the disciple raise the first question in this 
Upanishad: What is bondage? 

Understand it like this: the disciple is asking the sage, "What is 
this bondage?" This Upanishad is a deep dialogue, a conversation. If 
he who is always in bondage can recognize his bondage, he can then 
have an idea, a dream, a concept, or a sense of freedom. 

A perpetually diseased person can conceive only of a negative 

I 37 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

definition of health. He will understand health only as the absence 
of his disease. The person who has always lived in prison, in his 
chains, cannot understand a positive definition of freedom. He can 
understand freedom only as an absence of chains - when the walls 
of his prison will cease to exist, when there will be no guard with 
a gun to prevent him from doing whatever he wishes, to prevent 
him from going wherever he wishes to go. He can understand only 
by such negative definitions. But before he can understand this, 
it is also necessary to recognize that there are walls to his prison, 
to see the prison itself, to see the guards at the gate, the chains 
around his hands. 

A great mystic from the Caucasus, Gurdjieff, used to say: I 
have heard about a magician who had tamed many sheep. Every 
day he would have one sheep killed in order to prepare his food. 
Hundreds of sheep stood and watched this, but even then it never 
occurred to them that if not today then tomorrow they would also 
be killed. 

A guest who was staying with that magician said, "These sheep 
are strange. You kill a sheep in front of all the other sheep every day, 
and even then they are not worried. Can’t they conceive of their 
own death the next day, that any day the dagger will be plunged 
into their necks?" 

The magician replied, "I have hypnotized them and told them 
individually that they are not sheep, that all the rest are sheep,- all the 
others will be killed, except them. That is why they are carefree,- they 
don’t run away when they see others being killed." 

The guest asked, "And it is even more surprising that you do not 
tether them. Don’t they go astray? Don’t they get lost?" 

He said, "I have also told them that they are totally free, they are 
never in bondage - because one wants to run away from bondage, 
but when one is already free there is no question of running 
away. The desire to run away comes when one is in bondage, but 

I 38 | 

The Inquiry 

when there is no bondage and one is totally free then fleeing is 
not needed." 

Gurdjieff used to say that man is almost in this situation: he 
considers his prison to be his palace. So there is no question of leaving 
it; in fact if someone comes to help him to get out of it, he defends 
himself as though against an enemy who is trying to get him out of his 
palace. Man treats his chains as his ornaments, they are a decoration 
for him. If you want to take away his ornaments he will stand with his 
sword and fight. 

So we do not crucify Jesus without reason, we do not poison 
Socrates without reason. They are our enemies because they try to 
take away our ornaments. What they call our chains are our ornaments, 
and what they call our prison is our kingly abode,- what they call our 
slavery is our life, and what they call our sorrows are our pleasures. 

So Gurdjieff used to say that the first thing a prisoner must know 
if he wants to be free is that he is a prisoner,- everything else is 
secondary. If a slave is to get free, he first needs to understand that 
he is a slave. 

This should penetrate his consciousness so deeply that he feels 
an acute agony and becomes filled with a longing for freedom: What 
is bondage? 

The second question...then the second question arises: What is 

Katham bandhah - what is bondage? Katham moksbab — what is 

If you were to go and ask Buddha, "What is liberation?" Buddha 
would not answer. But if you asked him, "What is bondage? What 
is liberation?" you would receive an answer - because if you don’t 
ask the right question, you cannot receive the right answer. Wrong 
questions do not have right answers. And what you ask shows 

I 39 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

the state of your mind. Liberation can be understood only after 
understanding bondage. 

And then the next question is: 

What is vidya, true learning, and what is avidya, false learning? 

What is bondage ? What is liberation? What is true learning? — What is 
true knowledge? It would have been better if as in the first part - 
What is bondage? What is liberation? — we asked in this order: What is false 
learning? What is true learning? But it is not asked like that. And this is not 
accidental. What should be asked first is, "What is true ignorance?" 
then, "What is true knowledge?" But it is not asked like that, because 
here vidya has another meaning. Here vidya means: What is bondage? 
What is liberation? And when the Upanishad asks: What is vidya, true 
learning? It means: What is the method by which to be liberated? 
Vidya has exactly this meaning. Vidya means: What is the method by 
which to be liberated? Here vidya does not mean what we generally 
understand it to mean. 

What is the method? After understanding what bondage is, and 
what liberation is, now: What is the method? 

Granted that we are in prison, and granted that there is a vast sky 
outside the prison and it is possible to fly in that sky, granted that 
there is a sun beyond the walls of darkness and oneness with that sun 
is possible, and granted that beyond this body is the abode of the 
immortal - but then, what is the way there? What is the method? 

Even if we know what bondage is and what liberation is, if the door 
is unknown - the way to get out of bondage and to reach liberation is 
unknown — then what to do? Then nothing can be done. 

Buddha has spoken about the four noble truths, the four 
foundational truths, the four basic truths. He said, "He who knows 
the four, knows all." 

The first foundational truth is that man is in misery. The second 

I 40 | 

is that there is a cause for that misery, that one is not in misery 
without reason - because if one were in misery without reason 
then there would be no way to get free. And the third is that even 
if there is a cause, the misery is there, so there must be a way 
out, otherwise it would not be possible to transcend misery. So 
Buddha has said, "The first truth is misery, the second truth is the 
cause of misery, and the third truth is that there is a way to be free 
from misery." 

But even if there is misery, a reason for this misery, and a way to get 
free from this misery, if a possibility of becoming free from this misery 
did not exist, and if that state of freedom where man could be out of 
misery did not exist, then he would just plunge from one misery into 
another. So Buddha has spoken about a fourth foundational truth: the 
existence of the state of freedom from misery. Buddha said, "Enough, 
these four are enough." 

Here, vidya means: How to get free? What is the way? What is the 
method? What is the remedy? 

Maybe there is only bondage, a prison, miseries — and man is 
standing helplessly, without remedy! Then the struggle would be 
meaningless,- then we would have to be satisfied with what and where 
we are ; then we would just have to accept whatsoever happens as our 
destiny. Whatsoever we are, that would be our fate,- there would be 
no way to get out of it. Then it would be right to accept this prison as 
a palace in which we are destined to dwell with no possibility of ever 
getting out - so then what would be the point in creating unnecessary 
suffering by calling it a prison? 

There have been thinkers who believed that misery just exists and 
there is no remedy to free ourselves from it,- it is the very nature of 
life, transcendence is impossible. 

Diogenes was a Greek thinker. When the Greek emperor visited 
Diogenes he asked him, "Tell me: what is the greatest truth of life? 
Tell me about the highest, the supreme-most truth." 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

Diogenes replied, "There is no way to get to know that greatest 
truth, so leave it and ask for the second truth." 

The emperor was taken aback, and he asked Diogenes, "But then 
at least say something about the first one." 

Diogenes replied, "No, there is no way to know it, because the 
supreme-most truth is: not to be born at all. And now you have 
already been born. The highest truth is not to be born at all. This is 
the first truth. But now there is no way, you have already been born. I 
will tell you the second truth, and that is: to die right after birth." To 
die right after birth! 

"Why?" the emperor asked. 

Diogenes replied, "Life and its miseries are not separate,- unless 
you die this death, miseries will persist. To be is the misery. There is 
no way out." 

Naturally, if this is the situation, then there is no way out except 

There have been thinkers who believe that there is no way to 
get free of the sufferings of life,- that there is no way to get out of 
the prison, because existence itself is the prison, that nothing exists 
outside of it. That is why the question is meaningful: Wbat is vidya, 
true learning? 

Is there a way, is there a remedy, or are we just helpless? If the 
latter is the case, then it is right to keep on dreaming, to keep on 
sleeping, treating the prison as a palace, thinking of the chains as 
ornaments. Then this would be intelligent. Many people live with this 
kind of intelligence,- they live in delusion in order not to have to be 
aware of the misery and the prison because there doesn’t appear to 
be a way to come out of it. 

What is vidya, true learning, and what is avidya, false learning? 

Avidya does not mean ignorance. If vidya means the method, the 

I 42 | 

The Inquiry 

way to reach, then what could be the meaning of avidya? Avidya means 
the method which appears to be a method but leads nowhere: a false 
method. Certainly there are false methods also, pseudo methods! 
There are doors which do not exist but they appear to exist; there are 
keys which look exactly like keys but they cannot open any lock, they 
are of no use,- one can play with them one’s whole life but nothing 
will open. 

Wherever there is a search then false keys can be invented because 
they are free, cheap,- they are easily available, they can be purchased 
in the market. What you call dbarma, religion, generally ninety-nine 
percent of it is avidya, because a superficial search and the desire to 
get things cheaply creates false methods in the marketplace. 

Many ways exist, most of them false ways which only lead to 
oblivion. If one falls into oblivion then the prison no longer exists. 

If one is intoxicated by the prison, does the prison still exist? 
No, in intoxication neither the prison nor the person himself exist; 
everything disappears in unconsciousness. And the intoxicated 
person becomes the emperor of this prison. The intoxicated person 
imagines in his prison that he is flying high in the sky. Now he can 
imagine anything, because when one is intoxicated one can dream 
and an awareness of the truth is lost. Like this, one can visualize 
God. Someone who has not even seen himself can see God; someone 
who does not even know himself knows the ultimate. These are the 
devices for deception. 

And this world is not harmed as much by ignorant people as it 
is by the so-called knowledgeable people who hand you false keys. 
They derive much pleasure in giving you the keys, and you have the 
pleasure, the great pleasure, of getting something for free without 
paying a price, without doing anything. And most people want to get 
something without doing anything for it. 

The greatest of all human diseases is lethargy, inertia-, wanting 
something for nothing, wanting to reach somewhere without moving. 

I 43 I 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

Expecting the goal to come walking towards you without even taking 
a single step - what could be better than that? The crowd is bound 
to follow these people. The crowd pleases these so-called gurus and 
their ego is fulfilled. So a mutual exploitation goes on. So-called gurus 
with false keys are readily available,- and disciples too are available, 
ready to purchase these keys. And so the trade goes on. 

Avidya means those methods which do not open any door, but 
they give the illusion that an opening exists. That is why the inquirer 
asks: What is vidya7 What is avidya ? Waking, dreaming, sleeping and 
turiya — the fourth — what are these four states? 

In fact the distinction between vidya and avidya cannot be 
understood if these four states of waking, dreaming, sleeping and 
turiya are not understood. 

In the history of mankind, the first seekers on the earth to mention 
the four states of human consciousness were in India. Western 
psychology has until now been circling around the waking state,- up 
to the year 1900, Western psychology was completely involved only 
with the waking state. Any discussion about the dreaming state was 
thought to be a lack of understanding. Whosoever talked about the 
dreaming state was thought to be mad. What is there in dreams? A 
dream is only a dream, what else is there to it? But during the last 
fifty years, as psychology went deeper into understanding the human 
mind, going deeply into the investigation of mental diseases, they 
gradually began to realize that under the waking state there lies a layer 
of dreams which is even more significant than the waking state. Until 
then the dream had been thought to be just a dream - a meaningless 
area, only human imagination; there was no need to pay attention 
to it. Thinkers of the West used to laugh at the East, where stupid 
people were even talking about dreams. But now, today, due to the 
efforts of Freud, Jung and Adler, psychologists are constantly talking 
about dreams. 

If you go to a psychologist he will first inquire about your dreams, 

I 44 | 

because according to him whatsoever is happening in your waking 
state is just superficial, it does not reflect your reality; only dreams 
reflect your reality. Reality through dreams? — because you cannot 
deceive in dreams. Man has become an expert in deceiving. You may 
talk of celibacy the whole day, but your dreams will tell how deep 
your celibacy is,- you can easily fast the whole day, but your dreams 
will tell how deep your desire for food is. 

As yet man has not found a way to deceive in his dreams. His 
dreams expose his reality. In dream a thief is a thief and a saint is a 
saint. The waking state is not reliable,- there even thieves are saints, 
and sometimes even saints appear to be thieves. The waking state is 
not to be trusted. The waking state is not at all reliable, because man 
manipulates the waking state in every way, paints it in every way. 

So what you pretend to be in your waking state is completely false 
and dreamlike. And nothing is truer than your dream, because as yet 
you cannot be deceptive in dreams. If anyone ever discovers how to 
do that, your dreams will also begin to be false,- but as yet no one has 
discovered how to do it. If you discover such a technique someday 
you may choose to be a saint in your dreams. But as yet you cannot 
manipulate your dreams, as yet you cannot direct your dreams, you 
cannot yet penetrate into them,- you remain standing outside them. 
That is why when your dreams are investigated, your deeper reality 
becomes known,- this second layer is deeper. 

You have an upper layer, that is the waking state. What do you do 
in the world from morning till night? All your chanting, worshipping 
and praying - no, these are not that deep. What you do in dreams is 
more profound; they bring to the surface your inner state of being. 

So psychologists now accept that even a dream is not merely a 
dream, and in actual fact it is more true than the waking state. 

The question is, what are these four states? - because without 
understanding these four states it will be impossible to enter into 
meditation. People say that they want to know their real self. They 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

perhaps think that there is a direct way to know the real self. No, first 
you have to know what the waking state is, what the dreaming state 
is, what the sleeping state is, what turiya is. Then, only then, you can 
enter into your inner being. Turiya is your inner being. 

This is of great psychological interest. Now the West has accepted 
that dreams are significant. A genius like Freud devoted his whole life 
to studying people’s dreams. But the West has still not accepted the 
third layer. The West has not yet inquired, "What is dreamless sleep?" 
because they think that sleep is merely sleep, as they used to think 
that a dream is merely a dream. Now they think that sleep is merely 
sleep, a matter of relaxation — one gets tired and sleeps. But doubts 
have started arising. 

After the year 1950, in these twenty years, doubts arose, and now 
they have begun to think that sleep is not merely sleep. So now, in 
America, ten major labs are working on the question of deep sleep. 

It has become clear to them during these twenty years that unless 
we understand sleep, it is going to be difficult to understand man — 
because a man who lives for sixty years sleeps for twenty years. 

This is not a small ratio! Twenty years of sleep during a lifespan of 
sixty years! One-third just spent in sleep! So sleep must have a deep 
significance, it must have a purpose. It is an essential part of life. A 
man can live for three months without food, but not without sleep,- a 
man can fast for three months, but can’t do without sleep. 

One more amazing thing that has come to the notice of the 
Western psychologist is that a man will also go mad if he does not 
dream. He cannot live without dreams. If a man is allowed to sleep 
but not to dream... They have conducted experiments, because 
machines are now available which can indicate when you are dreaming 
and when you are sleeping. When you are dreaming, a needle moves 
very quickly, because the brain is active when you are dreaming. Even 
by touching your eyes in sleep it can be known whether you are 
dreaming at that time or not, because when you are dreaming your 

I 46 | 

The Inquiry 

eyes are moving in the same way as they move in the waking state 
when you are seeing. 

And slowly, slowly it is becoming clear that the eye movements 
will confirm what type of dream you are having. When you are seeing 
a sexual dream your eyes move very fast. The impulses in the brain 
and the frequency of the eye movements have been observed. Now 
you can no longer remain unconcerned that others will never know 
about your dreams,- the man sitting in your room can know all that 
you are doing inside! Sooner or later we will be able to categorize 
the different eye movements and the different measurements of your 
brain impulses and what they mean. Then we will know what type of 
dream the saint is having! 

The latest discovery is that if a man is not allowed to dream... A 
man dreams about eight to ten times during the course of a night. 
There is deep sleep and in between there are dreams — so when 
the machine indicates that someone is dreaming he is immediately 
awakened. As soon as he begins to dream he is awakened,- the dream 
has been discontinued, and again he is allowed to sleep — he is allowed 
to sleep until he starts dreaming again. As soon as he starts dreaming 
he is awakened again. The results are surprising: however much sleep 
you may have, if you are not allowed to dream after fifteen days you 
start going crazy. Dreams are necessary, otherwise you will go mad. 

You may think that dreams disturb you too much,- but that is the 
outlet of your madness. If you are prevented from dreaming you will 
certainly go mad because that which remains inside will disturb you 
the whole day. If it is not allowed to be released during the night it will 
surface during the day. So it is better that it is released in the darkness 
of the night, because if it were to come up during the day it would 
be troublesome. If the anger which you would normally throw away 
by killing somebody in your dream during the night is suppressed 
for fifteen days, you will actually kill someone — there will be such an 
accumulation of anger that you will have to kill. 

I 47 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

Dreams are necessary. Unless consciousness reaches to turiya, 
dreams are necessary. Only someone who attains to turiya neither 
needs dreams, nor sleep, nor even the waking state,- he passes through 
all three, but he has no need of them. He is awake even in dreams, he 
is awake during sound sleep; he is also awake during the waking state. 
We are dreaming even during the waking state, we are even dozing 
during the waking state. 

What are these states? 

During the second half of the twentieth century psychologists 
began to think that deep sleep also needed to be investigated. If 
someone’s sleeping state could be accurately understood it would 
be easy to know his personality and his real nature. Sleep also has 
qualities. Everyone does not sleep in the same deep state. But even 
now, psychologists are not yet aware of turiya, the fourth state. But 
Jung has said, "We have to accept the discovery of the East that 
dreams are valuable and that they should be investigated." 

When the Upanishads were translated for the first time in 
the West, people were asking, "What are these Upanishads? Is 
there any spirituality in the inquiry into dreams? To ask about 
the divine, about liberation, can be understood, but to ask about 
dreams? What is this inquiry? And this inquiry is being made by 
Hindus, who believe that this world is maya, a dream. And they 
are inquiring about dreams!" So Jung has said, "Now, bowing our 
heads, we have to accept that the dreaming state is more important 
than the waking state." 

But Jung had already died; he never came to know that 
psychologists have now had to accept the importance of sleep. The 
deeper the phenomenon is, the more valuable it becomes. And yet 
they are still not aware that there is a state beneath the sleeping state, 
which is not a state but being itself, called turiya. 

These are the three states: waking, dreaming, sleeping,- and the 
fourth is not a state — that is our self-nature, our being. 

I 48 | 

So the inquiry is valuable. We shall probe into the answers in the 
Upanishad one by one. 

What are these five bodies? - the annamay, formed of food, the 
pranamay, formed of life-energy,- the manomay, formed of psychic- 
energy,- the vigyanamay, formed of awareness,- the anandamay, formed 
of bliss. 

We have heard about the "soul" and its search, but until we know 
what the physical body is, we cannot search for the soul. This is a very 
scientific search. 

What is the body? If there had been only one body it would have 
been easy, but we have five bodies inside ourselves. The Upanishads 
have divided the layers of our bodies into five parts. What is visible 
on the outside is the annamay body. Hidden behind it is the pranamay 
body - what scientists in the West call bio-energy. The East has called 
it prana; it is an energy body. It is the second layer within this physical 
body. Behind it is the manomay body, the body of mind, of psychic 
energy. Those who have gone on the inner journey know that the 
mind is also a body. "Body" only means that you are surrounded by 
a layer of it. 

Behind the mind there is one more body called the vigyanamay 
body. This we call consciousness, that capacity of knowing. The 
ability to know is also a body. Behind that the Upanishads accept 
one more body which they call the anandamay body the bliss body. 
Those glimpses of happiness which we occasionally feel in life are the 
happenings in our bliss body. 

These are the five bodies. Behind these exists our inner being. 
These are the five walls of our prison,- these five are our prisons. The 
divine is within as well as outside these five walls. With the fall of these 
five walls, the inner and the outer become one. Sometimes we are able 
to penetrate through these five walls and touch the divine outside. 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

Sometimes the divine outside is able to send its rays across these five 
walls and touch us inside. But this happens rarely,- this phenomenon 
happens rarely. 

Sometimes, in deep love with someone, you can suddenly cross 
beyond these five walls and you get a glimpse of the divine in the 
other. But this is only a glimpse. The glimpse comes and then 
vanishes. This is why when you are in love with someone, the other 
does not appear to be just a person, he or she appears to be divine. 
This is in no way a mistake,- it is a glimpse, but it is only a glimpse. 
This phenomenon happened because the five walls were penetrated - 
a little bit of fragrance entered you. It will not happen every day. This 
is why lovers find themselves in great difficulty afterwards, because 
later one finds that the man is just ordinary, or the woman is just 
ordinary. Where has that glimpse gone? It has disappeared, it was 
only a momentary thing. 

That glimpse will only come in some very sensitive moment. 
Sometimes it comes seeing a flower in bloom,- sometimes, cutting 
across the five bodies, one gets a glimpse seeing a cloud floating in 
the sky,- sometimes the sun rises in the morning and its rays touch 
not only the body but penetrate beyond the five bodies, touching 
something within. 

It is in such glimpses that the concepts of the religions have been 
born in the world. A sage is taking a bath in a river.. .the sun is rising, 
and he is standing on the banks freshly bathed and the sun’s rays 
enter him... The sun becomes a deity, the sun becomes a god to him. 
His experience is complete in itself. But now people stand with their 
hands folded in prayer because the sun has become a deity, although 
they can t see any point in it. Science books say that it is nothing but 
a fireball, and this he can understand, but about this god he has no 
idea at all. 

Sociologists say that perhaps seeing the sun people became afraid 
and so they took the sun to be a god. All religions were born out of 

I 50 | 

The Inquiry 

fear. People may have been afraid of fire, so to show respect to it and 
to persuade the fire not to harm them or the sun not to harm them, 
people knelt down to worship them with folded hands. This is a total 

With an awareness of these five bodies, the inner journey starts. 

What is the doer? What is this embodied soul? What are the five 
categories? Who is the one who knows? Who is the witness? Who is 
the one that resides deepest? Who is the knower of all thoughts and 

What do these mean? Similarly: 

What is the jeevatma, the individual soul, and what is paramatma, the 
universal soul? What is maya, illusion? 

What are these? 

These questions are the preface, then the Upanishad enters 
into the answers. Try to understand the questions correctly. In this 
morning’s discourse, understand the questioning mind; understand 
the proper dimension of the question. Answers are not so difficult, the 
question is the real matter - because the answer has to be born within 
the questioner. The answer does not come from outside, the answer 
is not without, it is within you. If you can ask the right question, the 
inner answer starts arising in you. "The right question" means that 
you have begun to hit at the answer within you. The wrong question 
means you do not hit it at all and the answer never comes. The answer 
can be given from without, but it never reaches you. 

A communion is needed: the answer should be throbbing within 
you, and then, when it is also given from the outside, only then can 
you receive the answer, otherwise not. Until you feel a deep response, 
until your inner strings feel a resonance when the outer strings are 

I 51 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

played, until your inner veena resounds, the outer veena may continue 
playing but it will be of no use. 

Throughout the Upanishad, I will give you the answers from 
without. But that will not be enough. A sensitivity needs to be created 
within you for the answers to hit at the right place within. And to hit 
at the right place is all that matters. If you have this resonance within, 
the answer from outside can be helpful,- the answer is revealed at the 
meeting point of the two. And it is possible that the outer answer is 
not needed and the inner answer is revealed on its own, but it is never 
possible for the outer answer to be revealed without the resonance of 
the inner one. The outer is the secondary - it has its utility, but it is 
secondary,- it is necessary, but not essential. 

So it is possible that the answer is revealed without any answer 
coming from the outside. If the question is so penetrating, so heartfelt, 
so sincere that one’s whole life is at stake, then answers are revealed 
even without the outer answers. But it is not possible the other way 
— it is never possible. Buddha may be standing outside, Mahavira may 
be standing there, Krishna may be standing there and Christ may be 
standing there, and all of them may be shouting the answers, but if 
there is no sensitivity, no yearning, no thirst, no longing, there is no 
way - all those questions, all those answers are a wastage. 

From this evening we will begin to understand the answers. 

Now we will do the meditation to awaken a sensitivity within. If 
the sensitivity is there, we can then enter into the answer. 

So understand a few things about the method of this meditation. 
The first: stay seated, first listen to me, then you can spread out. 

For the first fifteen minutes of the meditation there will be kirtan, 
devotional singing and dancing. Drown yourself in it completely. If 
you hold back even a little you will miss the first step, and then there 
can be no question of taking the second step. So someone who shows 
even a little bit of miserliness is utterly stupid. It is better he should 
leave here,- he is making a useless effort. 

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The Inquiry 

Keep it in mind: either put everything totally at stake, or don’t 
do it at all. A halfhearted effort won’t do. Either devote yourself 
totally, or not at all. Do not work unnecessarily, because a halfhearted 
effort brings wrong results. You will feel that you tried it and nothing 
happened. It creates a dejection. No, don’t do it at all, then at least a 
hope will continue and you will gather the courage in some other life. 
No lukewarm effort. Boil up to one hundred degrees, then evaporation 
can happen. Participating in a lukewarm way and then cooling down, 
again and again repeating this, slowly, slowly you will lose all hope 
that you too can boil at one hundred degrees and evaporate. 

So the first thing to be remembered is to enter totally into the 
kirtan for fifteen minutes. By "total" 1 mean go completely mad ; less 
than that won’t do. Blindfolds must be kept on your eyes, with the 
eyes closed. Spread out - you have enough space here - spread out 
all over so that you can dance freely. 

Keep dancing for fifteen minutes during the kirtan, then the 
singing will stop and the music will continue. In those fifteen minutes 
you have to dance individually with the music. Whatever energy 
you have, use it totally. Become a flow of energy, so that the dancer 
disappears and only the dance remains. Let the music become all and 
you dance with that music. If you can do it with total intensity you 
will immediately feel that you have become separate from the body. 
It is not very difficult to be separate from the body — separation from 
the body is very easy. If you use your total energy, you immediately 
become separate from the body. This is the science behind it. 

So kirtan singing will go on for fifteen minutes in all, then it will 
stop and there will be only music — no group singing, only dancing 
and jumping - and put your total energy into it. The second step 
will continue for fifteen minutes. If you wish to shout you can shout, 
but the kirtan singing will stop. Do whatever you feel like doing. If 
the feeling of kirtan singing persists with someone, he may continue 
on his own, but the collective singing will stop. Individually you can 

I 53 | 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

do whatever you want to do - but you must not stop. Put your total 
energy into it for fifteen minutes. 

Then we will relax for thirty minutes. Lie down on the earth for 
thirty minutes like a corpse. You can lie on your back or on your 
stomach — whatever is comfortable for you. If someone feels like 
standing he can stand; if someone wants to sit he can sit. But be a 
corpse. Standing, stand in such a way that if you fall, then you will 
fall like a corpse. Don’t interfere. 1 will give a few suggestions during 
these thirty minutes. When I suggest to you to rub your forehead 
with your palm, slide your blindfold up or down a little for these one 
or two minutes. That is all I will suggest for you to do during the 
thirty minutes. When you have completed the first thirty minutes, 
1 will then go on suggesting to you what you are to do for the next 
thirty minutes, and you will be gone on the journey within. 

If this journey can be made, the answers of the Upanishad will be 
understandable,- otherwise you will miss. 

No one is allowed to come up on the raised area. 

Spread out all over the ground. 

I 54 | 

Chapter - 3 

The Sage Answers 

Soul is both: the universal and the individual. 

Through identification with the body, 

which of itself is not the soul, 

the soul becomes possessed 

with a sense of ego around the body. 

This sense of ego is the bondage 
of the individual, embodied soul. 

When this sense of ego ceases, it is called liberation. 

That which gives birth to this sense of ego 

is called aviiya, false learning, 

and that which leads to the cessation 

of this sense of ego is called viiya, true learning. 

What is bondage? What is liberation? Now come the answers to 
these questions. 

There are two methods, two ways to seek to understand life, to 
understand existence. One is the method of analysis, the second is the 
method of synthesis. One belongs to science, the other to religion. 

Science reduces things into their smallest unit, and through 
this it accumulates knowledge. Science dissects objects into their 
minutest parts, and only through this dissection is the knowledge 
of science born. 

The process of religion is just the opposite. Religion synthesizes 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

each and every unit with the ultimate whole, synthesizes the parts 
with the whole, unites the divisible with the indivisible. Only when 
everything is one, does religion become the ultimate knowledge. 

Understand it like this. There is a flower: you can dissect it. A 
scientist will dissect it,- to study the flower he will analyze it down 
to its chemical components, down to its elements - how many 
minerals it contains, how much water it contains, what chemicals it 
contains. He will dissect and analyze, and be able to describe the 
components of the flower. But no poet will agree to that; a lover 
of beauty will call this analysis murder because in the very analysis 
the flower is destroyed. What we have come to know is not the 
flower. What we found through analysis may very well be the 
constituent parts of the flower, but the flower itself is something 
else. We come to know the parts of the flower by analyzing them, 
but the flower itself remains unknown,- it disappears in the very 
dissection and analysis. 

The beauty of the flower will not be there in the labeled bottles 
containing the parts of the flower after the scientist has dissected it; 
that beauty was in the wholeness of the flower, in the total flowering 
of the flower. The beauty was not in its parts, it was in its totality. 

Understand it like this.- someone has written a song - can we 
know this song better by dissecting it? A linguist, if asked to explain 
the song, could explain how the song was written, what words were 
used, what grammatical rules were applied - but the song will be lost, 
because the song was not in its grammar. A song, when understood 
deeply, is not only the sum total of its words. It is more than that, 
something more. That "more" is lost. 

So science searches for the subtlest unit, the ultimate particle, but 
is deprived of the whole — it misses godliness. Religion says that that 
which emerges out of the organic unity of the whole is godliness. 
These two kinds of knowledge are totally different, in fact quite 
contrary. But these are the two ways in which one can know. 

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The Sage Answers 

Analysis can never lead us beyond matter,- it never will. No, it is 
impossible. It is futile to hope that someday science will declare the 
existence of God. A scientist may start talking of the existence of 
something divine, but that is not a statement of science. 

In his last days Einstein started experiencing the existence of 
something divine — but that is the statement of a scientist, not of 
science. It is like this: a scientist falls in love with someone and says 
that she is the most beautiful woman on earth. This is not a statement 
of science but a statement of the scientist. A scientist can feel blissful 
to see a flower and can dance in ecstasy, but this is not the dance of 
science, it is the dance of the scientist. 

But religious people often think... If sometimes a scientist admits 
to the existence of God - some Eddington, or Oliver Lodge, or 
an Einstein — religious people immediately start thinking that now 
science is also going to be talking of God. That is totally wrong. 
These statements are individual and personal, they have nothing to 
do with science. 

Science will never be able to talk of God, the ultimate reality, 
because the very method used by science leads to division, it does 
not lead to a synthesis, to the whole. It would be another thing if 
science someday used the method of religion and was then able to 
talk of the divine, but then it will not remain science anymore, it will 
have become religion. 

The answer of the sage starts with this: 

Soul is both: the universal and the individual. 

That capacity of awareness, the consciousness, this knower 
within man, the watcher, the witness, this is what the Upanishads 
call the soul. 

But this statement is very strange. It says: "The soul, the self 
is God. There is no other God than this self." This is the way of 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

synthesis. The individual self is within you, and the universal self is 
the name for the whole of existence. 

You have a drop of water. Ifyou ask a scientist, "What is the ocean?" 
he will say it is nothing more than the sum total of many, many drops. 
And he is not wrong. Ifyou divide the ocean, what will you get except 
drops? But is the ocean really only just drops? - storms and waves 
cannot arise in a drop. The ocean is something more, more than just 
drops of water. But science will then ask, "Where is the ocean? - if 
we take out all the drops of water there will be no ocean left." And 
they are right. 

If you amputate my hands, my feet, cut off my head, cut off 
all my limbs - then what is left of me? Yet I am more than just my 
hands and feet, and even when my feet are being cut off I can be 
aware that 1 am still here, that it is not me that is being cut off. Even 
when my head is being cut off 1 can also be fully conscious - not 
only will others be watching this head being cut off, I will also be 
watching it being cut off. 

When they were killing Mansoor by cutting his limbs off one by 
one, he was laughing. Someone in the crowd asked him, "Mansoor, 
have you gone mad? You are being killed and yet you are laughing." 

Mansoor replied, "Previously I was mad; then even the prick of a 
thorn used to make me cry. But now 1 am not mad, because just as you 
are watching my head being cut off, I am also seeing the head being 
cut off. You are watching it from the outside, I am watching it from 
within,- but we are both onlookers, watchers. You are watching this 
body from the outside, I am watching it from within." 

If we ask a religious person, "What is a drop?" he will say, "It is 
the ocean itself." . 

The scientist reduces the ocean to a drop, the religious man 
finds the ocean in a drop. And this is no small difference, this is a 
revolutionary difference. Science reduces all things to their lowest 
denominator, religion connects all things to the highest point. 

I 58 | 

This is not just an ordinary play of words so that you can say, "What 
difference does it make whether you say a drop is the ocean or the 
ocean is a drop?" It Joes make a difference, because science analyzes, 
and after this analysis it accepts the lowest common denominator as 
the basis for all life. When a man is dissected all that can be found is 
matter - the bones, the flesh - but no soul. So science says, "There is 
no soul, man is only a combination of bones, flesh and marrow — this 
is the sum total; there is nothing more." 

Religion says that the higher cannot be understood through the 
lower, but the opposite is possible... The ocean cannot be understood 
through the drops, but the drops can be understood through the 
ocean,- the lower can be understood through the higher, but the 
higher cannot be understood through the lower. There are reasons 
for this. Try to understand this correctly, then you will be able to 
understand the language of the Upanishad. 

An old man cannot be understood through a child, but a child 
can be understood through an old man, because an old man has lived 
both. A child is only a child, he has not yet become old. Through the 
ocean we can understand the ocean as well as the drop, but through 
the drop we cannot understand the ocean. Through matter we can 
explain only the body, through the divine we can explain both body 
and soul. The vast universe contains the molecule, but the molecule is 
unable to contain the universe. Through the vast universe everything 
can be explained, but through the infinitesimal it is impossible to 
explain the universe. 

Understand it in this way: science always focuses its attention 
on the first and religion always focuses on the last. Science focuses 
on the first step and religion focuses on the ultimate destination — 
because religion says that if there is no destination, then even that 
first step cannot be explained. How can you even call it the first step 
when there is no destination? That first step exists because of the last 
step which is waiting in the future. 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

So we can explain the first step through the destination; but if 
we have accepted the first step as everything, then the destination 
cannot be explained — then even the first step cannot be explained. 
The means can be understood through the end, but the end cannot 
be understood through the means. So the drop cannot explain the 
ocean, but the ocean can absorb the drop. 

The sage says: 

Soul is both: the universal and the individual. 

Two words have been used: universal soul, meaning pure 
consciousness, the divine,- then the individual soul, or self. 

What is the difference between the individual soul and the divine? 
The sage says there is no difference. There is only as much difference 
as there is between the ocean and the drop. The drop is also the 
ocean, it contains everything of the ocean. Only one thing is to be 
remembered - that the ocean is not only the sum total of its drops. 
The divine dwells within a person,- then it is called the individual soul. 

It is like the sun rising in the sky, filling your courtyard with 
its rays. There is no difference between the sunrays in the sky and 
the sunrays in your courtyard, but the rays in the courtyard have a 
boundary,- the walls of your courtyard surround the sunrays and a 
boundary has happened. 

The universal soul dwelling within limits is called the individual 
soul. But is it true that the rays of the sun which fill your courtyard 
have a boundary, or does the boundary belong to your courtyard? 
Do the walls create a hindrance for the sunrays? Walls enclose your 
courtyard, but how can the walls enclose the sunrays? But if the 
sunshine in your courtyard has the illusion that it has limits, that it is 
in bondage, then it will be called the sunray’s ego. 

The universal soul which is within the boundaries of the body is 
called the individual soul. But if this individual soul has the illusion that 

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The Sage Answers 

it is the body itself, then it is called the ego. There is no difference: 
even when the sunrays are under the illusion that they are imprisoned 
in the courtyard, in reality they are not. Rays cannot be bound; that 
is the very nature of sunrays. Close your fist and you cannot catch 
hold of the rays. Their very nature is unbounded — that is their very 
freedom, their very life. The walls are not there for the rays, they are 
there for the courtyard; but the illusion can be created. Illusion binds 
the individual soul with ego. With the dissolution of that illusion, the 
individual soul becomes the universal soul, the whole. Religion sees 
the whole of life in such a vast perspective. 

It is very useful for the seeker to remember this line of thinking 
because his journey also starts from the courtyard - from the walls of 
the courtyard to the sunrays, and from the sunrays to the sun itself. 

Soul is both: the universal and the individual. 

Through identification with the body, 

which of itself is not the soul, 

the soul becomes possessed 

with a sense of ego around the body. 

Ego is identification: the illusion of being that which I am not. 
The sunrays in the courtyard thinking that they are defined by the 
courtyard, that this is their being: this identification is ego. 

This sense of ego is the bondage 
of the individual, embodied soul. 

When this sense of ego ceases, it is called liberation. 

That which gives birth to this sense of ego 

is called avidya, false learning, 

and that which leads to the cessation 

of this sense of ego is called vidya, true learning. 

That which creates this ego is called avidya, false learning. The 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

method, the way, the process which creates the ego is called avidya. 
And the method or the way which leads to the cessation of the ego, 
which disintegrates the ego, which melts the ego, which withers the 
ego, is called vidya, true learning. 

We all live in avidya because we do nothing except create the 
ego. If we are earning money, we earn only to support the ego ; if we 
accumulate knowledge, we do it only to fulfill the ego. And if we go 
on the long journey towards prestige and position, climbing step by 
step to reach the capital and attain to the throne, then what will we 
do there? It is not you who becomes famous on the throne, it is only 
the ego which becomes famous; it is not your head which is crowned, 
it is the head of your ego which is crowned. 

We are earning nothing more than ego. Our entire life’s very 
process is of how to become something: how to push others’ egos 
back and reach to the front. A meaningless race! But it goes on your 
whole life,- from the cradle to the grave the same race continues, the 
same race of envy, rivalry and competition. 

What is envy? What is competition? What is rivalry? What is this 
struggle? - and why do they all exist? The basic motivation is not to 
be left behind, not to remain a pygmy, not to remain poor, but also to 
be crowned, to be garlanded, for this ego to be studded with precious 
stones, to shine,- not to remain a nothing but to become something. 

From the smallest to the biggest, all are engaged in this one race. 
And this race is so strange that even if it sometimes takes just the 
opposite turn the basic motivation still remains the same. A man 
goes on accumulating wealth so that he may reach to the top, to the 
peak of wealth, to the Everest of wealth. And another man renounces 
his riches, goes to the jungle and becomes an ascetic, and yet he 
may still be vain and now start collecting the coins, the rewards of 
his asceticism, instead of ordinary coins. There is still the ego, that 
now there can be no one as pure as him,- that there is no comparison 
between him and the rest of the world. 

. I 62 | 

The Sage Answers 

The ego can even feed itself with the search for the divine. Ego 
can even talk about the divine in order to show that now it is not 
involved in just ordinary matters, that now it has even got a hold 
on God! 

If the process of earning ego is avidya, we all are living in avidya. 
And what we call vidya, learning, what we call schools, colleges and 
universities, places of learning, if we understand the sage properly 
these are all places of false learning. They are anti-universities, because 
nothing is taught there except the art of filling the ego. All education 
is a process to create ego ; it is an attempt to arouse ambition. The 
father tells his son to come first in his class and not to lag behind. 
And if the son lags behind, the father feels miserable. If the son comes 
first, it is as if the father himself has come first. 

Everyone has to be in the race, that is the only game. If this is 
avidya, false learning, then our whole life is avidya. Then we know 
nothing of vidya, the right learning, because the sage says that right 
learning is that process, that method which melts the ego, which 
withers the ego — and a moment comes when ego is no more and only 
the soul remains, only the being is left. 

You may call that vidya, religion, yoga, meditation, prayerfulness, 
worship, any name you want to give it — thousands of names have 
been given to it - but the essence of vidya is only one: it should 
create an inner state where only you remain but not the ego, where 
consciousness remains, but there is no center inside proclaiming "I." 

You should be able to lose this "I" through any method or process. 
And this losing does not mean falling asleep or forgetting yourself, 
it means that you should be left totally awake, fully conscious, with 
self-remembrance, and yet the I should not remain,- only that should 
remain which has no connection with the 1. 

One morning someone came and bowed down to Buddha’s feet. 
A skeptic was also there, sitting near Buddha. And the skeptic asked 
Buddha, "Why don’t you prevent this person from touching your 

I 63 | 

feet? - because you yourself have taught us not to go to anybody’s 
refuge, rather to seek one’s own self. This man has come to you for 
refuge and you are not preventing him." 

Buddha said, "If I had been there, I would have prevented him." 
And Buddha continued, "And if 1 had been there, then preventing him 
from touching my feet or inspiring him to come to my feet would have 
been one and the same thing. But the man who might have prevented 
him or inspired him does not exist anymore. You saw him bowing his 
head, so did 1. But there is a slight difference between us. You saw him 
bowing down his head to me, whereas I wondered who he was bowing 
down to. I don’t see anybody! To whom has he bowed down?" 

The sage calls the methodology which brings one to such moment 
in life vidya, right learning. 

What 1 am calling meditation is simply this science of religion. 
Whenever I say meditation, I am referring to this vidya. 

We all live in unawareness. We are living as if asleep. 

You may have seen a person under hypnosis walking, or a 
somnambulist sleepwalking, many persons sleepwalk. There may be 
many amongst you here, because at least seven out of one hundred 
walk in their sleep. At least seven! But the person is never aware of 
it, because he walks around and then goes to sleep again. He walks 
with open eyes. People have even murdered in their sleep and in the 
morning they were totally unaware of it, they could only say that 
they had had a dream in the night in which they killed someone. 
People have stolen, and they were not responsible at all because it 
all happened while they were asleep. But this refers only to those few 
people who sleepwalk. 

And if we look at ourselves closely, we all live in a kind of sleep. 
Whatever you are doing you are not aware of it, your awareness is 
somewhere else. When you are walking on the street, are you aware of 
your walking? Your awareness may be anywhere else except walking. 
When you are eating, are you aware of eating? Your awareness may be 

The Sage Answers 

anywhere else except on eating. Yes of course, your awareness goes to 
food too, but that only happens when you are not eating. 

Your awareness is not there where you are. Then what is left when 
there is no awareness? There is sleep, and all the disturbances happen 
in that sleep. When you were angry with someone, do you remember: 
where was your awareness? If there had been awareness, anger would 
have been impossible. Awareness and anger cannot coexist. Anger is 
not possible with awareness. For anger, sleep is needed, intoxication 
is needed. 

That is why a person becomes sorry after he has been angry, he is 
surprised that he could have done such a thing - and for what? What 
was the sense in it? Even though it was he himself who became angry 
- and it is not that this is the first time that he has become angry, and 
it is not the first time that he is regretting it. He has regretted it many 
times, because he has been angry many times, and each time he has 
wondered why he had done it, what was the point? And why did he 
do it when there was no point? This person was not aware, was not 
present; he only returned home after the anger was gone. He was 
absent when the anger happened, and when he returned he was sorry. 
But at this stage there is no use feeling sorry,- there is no meaning in 
it, it is pointless to feel sorry. 

There are a few things which are impossible to do with awareness. 

That which wise men have called sin cannot be done with 
awareness. This is the definition of sin-, something which you cannot 
do with awareness. And that which you can only do in awareness is 
called virtue. You cannot steal with awareness, you cannot murder 
with awareness, you cannot be angry with awareness,- but you can be 
compassionate with awareness, you can be loving with awareness. 

Whatever is possible to do with awareness, all that is religion, is 
virtue. That which is impossible to do with awareness, for which sleep 
is necessary, which can happen only in unawareness, is sin. 

So we are not living in awareness. Sometimes even when we sit in 

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meditation we feel sleepy - even then! In fact then our sleep is even 
deeper. The reason for it is that we have no experience of awareness. 
The way we walk, sit and stand — everything happens in sleep, we are 
accustomed to it. 

I said that we do everything without awareness, in a sort of sleep. 

1 was reading the biography of a man who had a habit of 
stammering. Psychologists analyzed it for years, and even after the 
best efforts and thousands of dollars being spent on his cure the 
stammering wouldn’t stop. He was the son of a rich man, but no 
remedy could be found. He was given medicines, everything was 
tried, but the stammering did not stop. Then an interesting incident 
occurred. A play was being put on in the town and they needed 
an actor who could stammer; the actor who was experienced in 
stammering had fallen ill, he was unable to perform, so someone 
told them about this boy in the town who would be as expert at 
stammering as this actor was. The boy was called. The role was 
small, and the boy was readily available — training someone would 
be a difficult task. That young boy was sent onto the stage, and 
the miracle of all miracles happened that day: the boy could not 
stammer on stage. He tried his best, but he could not stammer. So 
what had happened? 

I was in a town and a student from a university came to me. He 
had developed a strange habit of walking like a woman. He had tried 
a lot of things but he did not improve,- often on the street he would 
find himself walking like a woman. There is no harm in walking like 
a woman - because women also have to walk - but he was in trouble 
and felt miserable. 

In actual fact, the distribution of flesh on men’s and women’s 
bodies is different. Women gather flesh on some parts where men do 
not, so the difference in their gait is natural,- it is a difference of flesh. 

But he had no accumulation of flesh which would make him walk 
like a woman - because sometimes he would also walk like a man. It 

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was just sometimes that he would start walking like a woman. He was 
in great trouble. 

I told him, "Now do this: consciously try to walk like a woman. " 

He said, "What are you saying? I am already in trouble doing 
it unknowingly, and now you want me to do it knowingly? I try to 
prevent it all the time, but whenever 1 forget I walk like a woman." 

I said, "You have tried to prevent it consciously but it didn’t stop; 
now I ask you to consciously try to walk like a woman. Get up and 
walk in front of me." 

He tried his best but he could not manage it. He said, "What has 
happened today? You must have done a miracle." 

I asked him, "Don’t tell anyone, because I had nothing to do with 
it. You have performed the miracle, but you are not aware of it." 

A few things cannot be done knowingly, consciously. And a few 
things just drop by themselves in awareness. 

Meditation is the method of vidya. It is impossible to assert the 
ego with awareness. Try to assert the ego consciously and you will 
understand what I am saying. 

Gurdjieff used to play a trick on his disciples. He would put them 
into a situation in which they were unaware that they were being 
made deliberately angry. He would create a situation, or would do 
something so that the disciple became so annoyed, upset, that he 
would start screaming and abusing and become afire — and it was all 
planned, and everyone was contributing to this game. Only this one 
person was unaware that a trick was being played on him. 

When he was swept up in the storm of his anger, ready to leave 
with all his baggage, abusive, then Gurdjieff would say, "Be alert, be 
aware of what you are doing." And the disciple would suddenly be 
taken aback and everything inside him would come to a standstill. He 
would laugh and say, "This was too much! So it was all a game." 

Gurdjieff would try to arouse the ego, and when it was there he 
would shout at the right moment, "Now look within for the ego!" 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

The disciple who was afire with ego would then close his eyes, 
look within, and sit quietly...until he would open his eyes and say, 
"No, it is not there - I am searching for the ego, but it is nowhere 
to be found." 

Then who created such a storm? Big storms can arise even out 
of vanity. Storms can arise even in small teacups! Mighty storms can 
arise out of the insubstantial. 

Vidya is the experiment to drop the false and meaningless forms 
which we have created within ourselves. There are many methods 
of vidya. 

We are experimenting with a few here. 

Now I will explain to you the method which we are going to use 
tonight, and I will give you some explanation about the experiments 
for tomorrow,- then we will enter into the night meditation. 

During tonight s method, which we will do now, you are to stare 
at me for thirty minutes without blinking your eyes, with your eyes as 
wide open as possible. You are to connect yourself with me through 
the eyes. The eyes are the doors. You are to bring your consciousness 
to me through your eyes,- you are to extend your consciousness 
towards me. 

If it can be extended to me, you can extend it further. Do not 
worry too much about that. If you can extend it to me, it will not be 
difficult to extend it to the sky. 

So for thirty minutes you are not going to blink your eyes. You 
may say that this is very difficult. It is not difficult at all. You are not 
aware that when you look at a movie you do it without blinking your 
eyes for hours on end. That is why your eyes get tired,- you are not 
aware that you were not blinking, so the eyes get tired. Whenever 
you look at something attentively, your eyes don’t blink. 

It is not difficult. The difficulty is just a trick of the mind. As soon 
as your mind becomes aware of the danger, that the disappearance 
of avidya is happening and, "This whole game will be over,- if this 

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jump happens, I will disappear," then the mind immediately says, 
"Your eyes are getting totally tired. Close them, blink them - have 
you gone mad?" 

These are the mind’s devices. Be aware of them. Don’t worry, tears 
are good,- they will cleanse your eyes, you will feel unburdened. Don’t 
think of anything. You are not to blink your eyes for thirty minutes. 
This is the first thing. 

This experiment needs to be done while standing. Your eyes are 
not to blink at all, you are to stare at me continuously. Keep your 
hands raised up towards the sky, because the whole effort is to move 
the consciousness which is directed at me towards the sky at any 
moment. So continue holding both hands up. Keep staring at me, 
keep dancing and jumping and simultaneously shouting "Hoo... 
Hoo.. Hoo..." in a loud voice. 

This "Hoo" is being used as a mantra. This "Hoo" hits at the 
kundalini, the serpent power. When you shout "Hoo" loudly, you 
will find that it is hitting at your sex center, exactly on muladbar, the 
sex center. 

So for thirty minutes, with your eyes staring at me, your 
consciousness rushing towards me, "Hoo" hitting at your kundalini, 
hands ready for the journey towards the sky. And you are dancing, 
because in dance the hit is stronger, the energy will rise within to go 
upwards through your spinal cord. 

Meanwhile I will keep silent, but occasionally I will make a gesture 
with both hands directing you to move towards the sky. When I make 
that gesture with the hands, then you are to put your total energy into 
dancing, into shouting "Hoo," into staring at me — you have to go 
totally mad. Put your total energy into it and keep jumping. When I 
stretch my arms upwards and keep them there, then you have to give 
your total energy. 1 will make these gestures ten to twenty-five times 
to pull you from the lower to the higher. Don’t be a miser at that 
moment, give your total energy. 

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And when... Keep sitting, keep sitting, listen to the whole process. 

When I feel that energy is running in your spine and your body 
has become a dancing flow of energy, when 1 feel that many people 
have reached to the point where their union with the universal energy 
can happen, I will turn my hands palms down. When 1 turn my palms 
downwards, search within if there is any energy left, then give it totally, 
and I will bring my hands down. This will be the indication that in 
that moment, if you give your total energy, the universal energy from 
above can descend on you, the individual energy. 

And where both energies meet there is bliss, and where both of 
them meet, vidya flowers. Where a person’s consciousness identifies 
with the physical body avidya happens, that is where ego emerges,- 
and where a person’s consciousness meets with the universal 
consciousness vidya blooms, and one attains to the egoless state. 
Where a person’s consciousness is identified with the body ego is 
born,- and where a person’s consciousness meets the universal energy 
the individual soul is realized. This describes tonight’s experiment. 

A little more information. Today, in today’s experiment, to get 
you accustomed to it, I did not push you to put your total energy into 
it, and kept the experiment a little liberal. The experiment will be 
more profound from tomorrow onwards. 

Now I will tell you the new arrangement of the experiments which 
will be applicable for the whole camp from tomorrow onwards. 

The morning experiment which we did today, will now be done in 
the afternoons from four to five. Kirtan for fifteen minutes, dance for 
fifteen minutes, and relaxation for thirty minutes. 

For the mornings, we will start another experiment from tomorrow 
on. It will be fast breathing for ten minutes,- during the next ten 
minutes there will be dancing, screaming, crying, laughing, throwing 
out all the physical energy,- then for ten minutes shouting the mantra 
Hoo' — the same as we will do tonight,- and then relaxation for thirty 
minutes. This will be the morning experiment. 

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The Sage Answers 

The one we did this morning will be done from now on in the 
afternoons. And the experiment that we are to do tonight will 
continue at night. 


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Chapter - 4 

The Four States of Existence 

The state in which the soul can perceive gross objects, 

such as sound and touch, 

is called jagrat, the waking state of the soul. 

Gross objects are perceived through the 

fourteen instruments - mind, intellect, 

accumulated mind, ego and the ten senses 

(the five senses of perception 

and the five sense-organs of action) - 

which are supported by the sun and the other gods. 

When in the absence of gross objects, 
such as sound and touch, 
and due to the unfulfilled 
and lingering desires of the waking state, 
through the fourteen instruments 
the soul perceives gross objects 
which are but creations of these desires 
- this state is called swapna, 
the dreaming state of the soul. 

There are four states of human consciousness,- we will begin our 
discussion with the waking state. The sage says, "The state of 
perception achieved through the instrumentalities of the mind and 

The Four States of Existence 

the senses, helped by the sun and other gods that pervade all around, 
is the waking state." 

The state in which the soul can perceive gross objects, 

such as sound and touch, 

is called jagrat, the waking state of the soul. 

Cross objects are perceived through the 
fourteen instruments - mind, intellect, 
accumulated mind, ego and the ten senses - 
which are supported by the sun and the other gods. 

Consciousness dwells within. Outside is the infinite existence. 
There are two ways for contact to happen with this infinite 
existence. The one which pervades all, the universal, and the other 
which dwells inside, the individual - there are two ways for them to 
meet. One is an indirect way it happens through the doors of the 
senses. The other is a direct way, immediate, without a medium,- that 
is possible through the transcendence of the senses. 

If this outer world is to be known, there are two ways. One way 
is that I should use the body and know it, and the other way is that I 
should leave all mediums and know it directly. 

Ordinarily, we can’t know the light of the outer world without the 
eyes, we can’t know the sounds of the outer world without the ears. 
The senses have to be used for knowing the colors of the outer world. 
Through these senses we know what is in the outer world, the senses 
are our mediums of knowledge. 

So the knowledge acquired through the senses is as if an incident 
has happened somewhere and then someone comes and informs me. 
In fact I was not present there, some medium has come to inform me. 
Certainly 1 will not hear about it exactly as it happened, because the 
interpretation of the messenger will be included in it. 

When my eyes bring the news to me that a flower has blossomed 
on a tree — very beautiful, very lovely — this information will not be 

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only about the tree and the flower, but it will also include the liking of 
my eyes. The eyes have added their own interpretation too. The eyes 
will have added many things to the flower on the tree, many more 
colors which are not there in the flower on the tree. 

You will be surprised to know that some five thousand years ago 
man could see only three colors: in the books written five thousand 
years ago only three colors have been mentioned. Later, human eyes 
started becoming more sensitive,- now they can see seven colors. 

Colin Wilson has declared in one of his great books that very 
soon, within four or five hundred years, man will be able to see colors 
which we cannot even imagine today. The eyes are becoming more 
and more sensitive day by day. 

Colors appear with the developing of the eyes. They cannot 
appear if there are no eyes,- the world is colorless. One who is born 
blind has no awareness of colors,- one who is born deaf has no world 
of sounds - for him the world is devoid of sound. 

Our knowing is through the senses. We are bound to accept 
what our senses convey to us because we have no other alternative. 
But the information that comes through the senses includes the 
interpretations of the sense-organs themselves. You see a face, it 
looks beautiful. 

Then look at the same face through a microscope and you will be 
perplexed: the face will look so uneven, so full of pits. You will see 
hillocks and lakes in it,- the scars of the face will look like large pits. 
Is the microscope telling a lie? No, the microscope is giving its own 
interpretation, it sees deeper than your eyes. 

Then look at that same face through an X-ray machine. Now the 
skin will disappear, only the skeleton will be left inside. Is the X-ray 
giving wrong information? No, the X-ray machine is giving its own 

Which face is real? — the one you saw with your naked eyes, the 
one you saw through the microscope, or the one you saw through the 

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The Four States of Existence 

X-ray machine? They are all giving information about the same face, 
all are correct, but every interpretation is partial and is dependent on 
the medium through which it is seen. 

But is it possible to see the world without a mediator? — because 
truth can be known only when we see the world without a mediator. 
The most profound discovery of the sages is that the world known 
through the senses is the projection of the senses on the world as we 
see it; that has been called maya. What you have seen is not only the 
objective scene, the viewer has also contributed to the view. 

In the story of Majnu and Laila, when Majnu is telling someone 
that Laila is very beautiful, he is not only saying something about 
Laila, he is saying something about Majnu also. In fact, it is the eye of 
Majnu that is able to see Laila as beautiful. It is not necessary that Laila 
look beautiful to everyone. Those who don t see Laila as beautiful and 
those who do see her as beautiful are describing the same Laila, but 
the mediators, the mind and the senses through which Laila has been 
seen, are also included in their descriptions. 

So when a person informs you about someone, "He is a very 
good man," then this information is not only about that man, he is 
giving an interpretation of himself also. And when a person says of 
someone, "He is a very bad man," it is not only about that man, it is 
also about the person himself. And it is possible that his information 
about the other may be wrong, but it cannot be wrong about himself. 
Our senses include their own interpretation. They are not inactive, 
indifferent mediators, they are active by projecting too. 

So this is one way — through the senses — to know the vast 
manifestation of reality. But those who have transcended the sense- 
organs and seen the world say that this knowledge of reality is illusory, 
maya. When a man like Shankara says that this world is illusory, do 
not misunderstand him and think that he is saying that this world 
is nonexistent. Shankara cannot say such an insane thing — that this 
world is nonexistent. The world does exist, but it is not the same as 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

what you are seeing. It is your vision that makes it look like that, it is 
your way of looking at it that makes this world illusory,- the world as 
you see it is your own projection, it is your own interpretation. 

It will be better to say that there is not one single illusion, there 
are as many illusions as there are people in this world. Everyone is 
living in his own created world,- everyone has a world around himself. 
You are living surrounded by your own world, your neighbor is living 
surrounded by his own world: there is no harmony between the two 
worlds. And whenever we put the two worlds together there is a 
struggle, there is a collision. The struggle between the husband and 
wife is the struggle between two worlds,- the struggle between the 
father and the son is the struggle between two worlds. The son is 
creating his own world, and the father has already created his world,- 
collision between the two is unavoidable. It cannot be otherwise. We 
live surrounded by our own interpretations. 

The sage says that the state in which the world is known through 
the senses is called the waking state. The state in which this world is 
known through the senses as mediators is called the waking state. A 
few more things are to be understood. 

The sage has said: .. .the sun and the other gods." The sun is the center. 
Whatever we see around us, if we search for the center of it all, the 
sun is the center. If the sun cools down, immediately our whole world 
will be reduced to ashes. The sun is life. Whether it is green leaves 
on the tree dancing in bliss, or clouds moving in the sky, or someone 
singing a song on earth, or playing on his flute, or a seed sprouting, 
or a waterfall falling from a mountain and flowing towards the ocean 
- the sun is at the root of all these. If the sun cools down, all our lives 
will cool down and vanish. 

That is why he has said: .. .the sun and the other gods. Everything else 
is secondary, the sun is the chief god. The sun means life. 

You are breathing, your blood is warm, and your heart is beating, 
the sun has made a contribution to it. If the sun is extinguished, we 

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The Four States of Existence 

will never know when it was extinguished because with the sun we will 
also be extinguished. No one will remain alive to write the history — 
that the sun was extinguished on such and such a date — because with 
the cooling down of the sun, we will also be finished, immediately. 

Therefore, the sun has always been accepted as the center - 
but why has it been called divine? Science does not call it divine. 
And the scientists are surprised: "Why this pantheism? Why is it 
necessary to see divinity in everything? The sun is the sun, what 
need is there to see something divine in it?" But Indian seers 
understand it differently. 

This is the way of Indian seers - to feel grateful to that which 
gives us anything, because the individual soul does not evolve in the 
absence of gratitude. All that is sublime in man grows with this feeling 
of gratitude. The more you feel grateful, the more your soul grows. 

So when we say the sun is just the sun, it is right, but there is 
no feeling of gratitude in this statement. It does not appear that we 
get anything from the sun,- it does not appear that we are a part of 
it, are reliant on it ; it does not appear to have anything to do with 
our heartbeats; it does not appear that we are extensions of it. Yet, 
although we are about one hundred million miles away, we are the 
very rays of the sun. It is the sun that is pulsating within us, it is the 
sun that is living within us. It is the warmth of the sun, it is the heat 
of the sun. 

With science no relationship is created with the sun. But this is 
sheer lack of understanding, because if we do not feel grateful to our 
life-giver, the higher within us cannot grow. 

The feeling of gratitude is a basic quality of a religious mind. It is 
through this feeling of gratitude that one receives divine grace. So 
when some people, full of awe, bowed down to the sun with folded 
hands, there was more to it than just the fact that it is an enormous 
fireball. These people had begun to recognize and knew the truth 
well...that bowing down gives nothing to the sun, but he who is 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

bowing down receives much. As the sensitivity of gratitude is born it 
creates simplicity, and the mind becomes innocent. 

And this does not only apply to the sun, it is a far greater 
phenomenon. Hence, those who bowed down to the sun also bowed 
down to the rivers and the trees. 

Sometimes amazing incidents happen. Buddhists have been 
worshipping the bodhi tree for two thousand five hundred years. 
Anyone can say that this is nonsense: it was just a coincidence 
that Buddha sat under that tree. What is there to worship? He 
could have sat anywhere! But during the past fifty years, science 
has discovered a very startling fact. The fact is that the third eye, 
in the middle of the forehead, had always been thought to be just 
imagination by scientists and thinkers, and they laughed at it and 
denied its existence. But during these fifty years, science has found 
a gland between the two eyes which is the most important gland 
in the human body. Whatever consciousness has grown in man, it 
is due to the secretion from that gland. And this gland is the same 
as that which has been called the third eye by the wise men of the 
East. The secretion that comes from that gland - and without which 
consciousness cannot evolve in man, intelligence cannot grow in 
man — surprisingly is found in large quantities in the pipal tree, the 
bodbi tree. When compared to all other vegetation in the world it is 
a very large amount. 

Colin Wilson has written in his new book, The Occult, "It would 
not be surprising if the tree might have had an influence on Buddha’s 
sitting under it and attaining to enlightenment. The tree may have 
influenced it, it was not just accidental,- the tree may have helped it." 

India has always worshipped the pipal tree. In that sense, the pipal 
is a unique tree among all the vegetation on earth,- all other trees are 
quite different. It is dangerous to sit or to sleep under any other tree 
in the night, except the pipal. Trees exhale oxygen during the day - 
it is beneficial to be near them - and during the night they exhale 

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The Four States of Existence 

carbon dioxide. It is only the pipal tree which exhales oxygen for all 
of the twenty-four hours. You can be near it any time,- it is beneficial 
to life. 

Those people who chose the pipal tree to worship from among 
all the others were full of gratitude. It is not just a coincidence that 
Buddha attained enlightenment sitting under this tree, it was a 
conscious choice. To sit and meditate under this tree is a part of a 
scientific process. 

Those who have felt gratitude have felt it in each and every 
minute thing in the world. Whenever they felt something had helped 
them, in gratitude they called it a god. A god means something 
which gives to us and does not take anything in return. A god means 
something from which we always receive, we are always receiving 
— and receiving without even asking for anything, continuously 
receiving without even thanking. It is given unconditionally, so 
we called it a god. And we cannot give anything in return. But, of 
course, we can show our gratitude. 

Every fiber of our being is connected with the existence spread all 
around us. When consciousness knows this connection through the 
sense-organs, it is called the waking state. To call it the waking state 
is only symbolic. Because we do not know the greater awakening, we 
therefore call this the waking state. So this is relative, because we 
know only three states. 

This first state is our relation with the world through the senses, 
the second state we know is the dreaming state, and the third state we 
know is the sleeping state. We know nothing about the fourth state. 
The day we will know the fourth, we will also know that what we had 
understood as the waking state up to now was also a state of dreaming 
and sleeping. 

Sri Aurobindo has said that when he was awakened, he came to 
know that until then he had been asleep, and when he knew the real 
life, he found that what he had taken for life was only death. But it 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

is natural that we cannot conceive of what we do not know, and we 
cannot even make comparisons. 

The waking state is so called in comparison to the other two 
states. We are acquainted with these three states - dreaming, 
sleeping, waking - and this can be called the waking state among 
these three. The day we come to know the fourth, all these three 
states will have to become sleeping states. Then we will have to 
define them in some other way. Then we will have to say.- deep sleep, 
less deep sleep, lesser deep sleep. What we now call the waking 
state, when compared to the other two, is the lesser deep sleep,- 
what we call dreaming, is the less deep sleep,- and what we call sleep, 
is total deep sleep. All these three are the states of sleeping, but at 
present we call it the waking state. 

The second state is dreaming. 

When in the absence of gross objects, 

such as sound and touch, and due to the unfulfilled 

and lingering desires of the waking state, 

through the fourteen instruments the soul perceives gross objects 
which are but creations of these desires 
- this state is called swapna, 
the dreaming state of the soul. 

Sometimes it is really amazing. We say that now the world has 
become a big village - Marshal McLuhan calls it a "global village." But 
this does not seem to be actually true. We only appear to be close, 
because the means of traveling have increased. People have not come 
closer to each other in consciousness. 

This Upanishad defined dreaming thousands of years ago, and 
during the last fifty years the West has still not been able to explain 
it totally, it is still groping. It is amazing to realize that human 
civilizations have discovered many things but these discoveries have 

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The Four States of Existence 

remained local and confined to their region, not reaching to the whole 
of human consciousness. 

Thousands of years ago this Upanishad stated that we call it 
dreaming when the senses have ceased to work and the eyes are 
closed, yet images can still be seen. The ears become inactive during 
sleep, outer sounds are inaudible, but even then sounds can be heard 
within. Hands are lying unmoving as if dead, touching nothing,- still 
touch can be felt within. 

The sage says: "The unfulfilled desires, the unsatiated desires - 
whatever is left incomplete in the waking state, these are fulfilled in 
dreams. So dreaming supplements the waking state." 

And many things can remain incomplete from during the day. 
You are going along a street and you see a beautiful woman but you 
cannot stare at her, that is not good manners. The desire to look at 
her remains in the mind; in the night you will again see her in your 
dream. While eating, sometimes you cannot eat to your satisfaction 
for many different reasons. You may have to rush back to your work 
or you have too many things to do, or it may be due to politeness and 
hesitation,- during the night dreaming will fulfill the remaining desire 
to eat. What remains unfulfilled in the waking state, dreaming will 
follow it and fulfill it during the night. 

That is why the person who lives totally in the daytime has no 
dreams. He who lives totally in whatever he does, who does it totally 
and not halfheartedly, who lives every moment totally, loses all his 
dreams. A person like Buddha will have no dreams. There is a reason 
behind it — because nothing has remained unfulfilled which has to be 
fulfilled during the night. 

The sage says: "When the senses are inactive but the consciousness 
is still seeing the images of objects created by the senses, this state is 
called dreaming." 

There is one difference between dreaming and waking: in waking, 
the object remains outside and the image is inside,- in dreaming, the 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

object is absent yet the image is inside. So a dream is a pure form, 
there is no object. The man you see in your dream is not present 
outside, yet his form is present inside. These forms are created by the 
senses. Remember it: these forms are created by the senses, they are 
the creations of the senses. How do the senses create them? 

Every sense accumulates its experiences. Whatever colors you 
have seen until now, and whenever you have seen them, all those 
memories of colors are stored in the mind. In dreaming, that 
accumulation is utilized; the eyes again use those colors. Whosoever 
you have ever touched, those touches, those contacts are collected. 
Inside this little skull of man is the greatest collection of the world; 
inside this small brain are ten billion cells, and every cell contains a 
great world in itself. 

This collection is not only of this life, it is from many, many lives. 
That is why you can see forms in dreams that you have never seen 
in this life,- you can see faces you have never met, that you do not 
remember,- you can see scenes that have nothing to do with the 
memory of this life. That is why sometimes a dream will leave you 
stunned, leave you in a fix,- you cannot understand what this dream is 
all about. Impressions from many, many lives have been accumulated 
- whatever you have known, all that is accumulated. The mind uses 
it again,- it is all recorded there. Conditioning means accumulated 
memories. Conditioning means that which has been collected in the 
cells of the brain. 

Now scientists have found a technique where they can activate 
any part of your memory by inserting an electrode into your brain. 
You may keep saying that you don’t want to see colors but you will 
not have any control over it. The accumulated memory of colors in 
your brain can be activated by the electrode and all kinds of colors 
will spread within you. You may say that you don’t want to see all 
this, but it will be out of your control because this memory has been 
touched by the electrode. 

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One more interesting thing is that whenever this same point is 
touched, those same colors will be repeated, because they are only 
a record. It is as if you are a gramophone record: it will repeat the 
same song as many times as you play it. Just like that, every cell in 
the brain is a record: whenever you touch it with the electrode, it is 
as if you put the needle on a record and it will play the same thing, 
again and again the same thing. You can do it thousands of times and 
the record in the cell will repeat itself. So, one thing is certain now 
in scientific terms, that your brain is an accumulation of impressions. 
During the dreaming state you see things again and again from this 
same collection. It is just like ruminating. 

A buffalo grazes on grass during the day, but there is no time to 
chew because, who knows, someone else may eat away all the grass 
while she is engaged in chewing. So first she grazes on the grass, then 
she ruminates leisurely, brings the grass back into her mouth and re¬ 
chews it. 

The whole day, the whole of our life we go on collecting, for lives 
together we have gone on collecting, then we ruminate in our dreams. 
Wherever the mind has remained unfulfilled then we reopen it, we reopen 
the record again; we spread those impressions again on the screen. 

Dreaming is an arrangement whereby we can project our 
impressions without the help of our sense-organs, without the help of 
the outer world. This is our private wealth. Again we can spread our 
own world within us. You can create a whole world. That is why, in the 
dreaming state, you never know that what you are seeing is a dream. 
In dreaming, what you see appears to be true. Only after waking up 
from a dream do you know that it was a dream. During the dreaming 
state it is never recognized as dream. 

If someone realizes the dream is a dream while dreaming, then the 
dream is broken, because in the presence of the knower the record of 
impressions hides, goes back into the deeper layer. Now the person is 
awake, waking has begun, the dreaming state is shattered. 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

The "dreaming state" means the senses have accumulated 
impressions in our memory, and we can reproduce this imaginary 
world within us, without even the help of the outer world. That 
we do daily This is another state of our mind. This is our deeper 
state. Because in waking we have had to make choices due to society, 
civilization, culture - there are thousands of restrictions - but in 
dreaming we are free. 

We have been free until now, but who knows whether we will 
remain free or not in the future, because now scientists are slowly 
becoming capable of entering into man’s dreams. 

During the past two hundred years, all over the world, politicians 
have been demanding freedom of thought. It will not be surprising 
if after this century, revolutionaries revolt and begin to demand 
freedom of dreaming, demand noninterference in dreaming, because 
in the near future governments will have the power to allow you to 
dream what they want you to dream, and restrict your dreaming of 
that which they don’t want you to dream. This danger is greater than 
the atom bomb. 

Psychologists are now discovering methods and systems to 
control the mind from without. Atom bombs can only destroy the 
body, but these methods are more dangerous because they can create 
deep psychological slavery. It will not be surprising if one day you are 
called to some police office and interrogated: "Why did you dream 
that dream last night? The government is totally against it. That 
dream is totally anti national,- you appear to be a traitor." In the future 
it will be possible to monitor your dreams, so it will not be surprising 
if fascist governments of the future begin to use it. 

Human dreams can be manipulated. If you know a small technique 
even you can manipulate them a little bit. For example, if you rub 
ice on the sole of the foot of a sleeping person, he may soon start 
dreaming that he is walking on ice. Or maybe a similar dream will 
begin: he will start dreaming that it is raining heavily and his feet are 

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The Four States of Existence 

getting wet. He will create a dream to include this sensation of cold 
received from the outside and it will activate all the impressions of 
cold inside the brain. 

Sometimes, when a nightmare is happening or a frightening dream, 
it may be simply because you have put your hands on your chest, and 
for no other reason. If you put your hands on your chest you may 
begin dreaming that someone is sitting on your chest. So if you put 
a pillow on somebody’s chest you can manipulate their dream a little 
bit, you can direct their dream. 

This is now well known. But now instruments have been invented 
which can direct your dreams from inside the mind — because this 
way your brain cells can be contacted directly, and the impressions 
can be activated. 

Without the aid of the senses, without any connection with the 
vast world outside and only on the basis of old memories, man creates 
a world within himself. That state is called the dreaming state. 

These are two states - waking and dreaming. To understand and 
transcend the dreaming state, freedom from dreams is necessary; only 
then, in the waking state, can our eyes become innocent, impartial, 
clean and smokeless. 

The eyes of animals have an innocence which human eyes don’t 
have. The only reason is that they have fewer dreams, almost none. 
Yet animals who live with human beings start dreaming. Cats and dogs 
dream because living with human beings they catch their diseases. 

Dreaming is a continuous anguish, a continuous anguish within 
you, an anxiety, a tension; it affects your eyes. Look into the eyes of 
a cow - they are totally clear, smokeless. Their eyes are like a calm, 
blue lake in which you can see even the pebbles lying at the bottom. 
Look deep into the eyes of a cow - they are totally empty, there are 
no layers anywhere in them. But look into the eyes of human beings! 
— there are so many layers in their eyes. Those layers are the creations 
of dreams. 

85 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

The more ambitious a man is the more shallow his eyes will 
become, because the more ambition he has the more dreams he will 
have. I said that whatever has remained unfulfilled creates dreams,- 
and ambition can never be fulfilled, it is always insatiable. 

So a half-fulfilled ambition fills a man with dreams. These dreams 
can become so profound that it may become difficult to awaken him. 

Perhaps a man like Hitler has no ordinary waking state as we know 
it. It only became known later, near the end of the second world war, 
when psychologists began to realize that the man they were fighting 
with appeared to be asleep, not awake. While bombs were being 
dropped on Berlin and fighting was going on in the streets, when 
Hitler was being defeated on every front and there was no way to 
escape - bullets were being fired right in front of Hitler’s bunker - he 
was still broadcasting that he was winning in Moscow. 

Hitler must have been dreaming: he was not hearing the shooting 
outside his door. Otherwise, there seems to be no way that he could 
have announced, "We are winning." When the chief of the army came 
and informed Hitler that they were losing the battle, Hitler ordered, 
"Shoot him down, he has gone mad! We can’t lose the battle. The 
question does not arise. It is only a matter of a few moments - Moscow 
must have surrendered by now." He had lost everywhere - but he was 
dreaming, he was not in the waking state. 

Perhaps an ambitious person lives in his dreams: the more the 
ambition, the deeper the dream. So if you want to see the shallowest 
eyes, you will find them in politicians. Profound eyes can be seen in a 
sanyasin, because sanyas means a state where no ambition is left, no 
dreams are left. And even if one last dream is left, it is only about how 
to transcend dreaming, how to get rid of the dream and to be free of 
it. If there is still an ambition, it is how to be free from ambition, that 
is all. 

If you can disperse your dreams, your waking will be more alert. 
Or, if you make your waking alert, the dreams will begin to disperse. If 

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The Four States of Existence 

you live your life more alert, more awake, your dreams will decrease,- 
or if you decrease your dreaming, awakening will increase. All these 
states are interrelated. And if dreams decrease and your waking state 
is stronger, you will know for the first time what deep sleep really is, 
otherwise you will never know it. 

What is deep sleep? Certainly we sleep, but we do not know what 
sleep is - because how can he who is asleep even in the waking state, 
be awake in the sleeping state? How can he who cannot wake up in 
the waking state, wake up in the sleeping state? Getting up in the 
morning we can say this much, that we have slept soundly — but we 
don’t know anything about it. 

You have been sleeping your whole life, but you have never 
confronted your sleep. Have you ever witnessed sleep descending? 
As the night descends in the evening, the sun is setting and darkness 
starts spreading layer by layer on the earth .. have you ever witnessed 
the sleep descending on your consciousness like that? No, you have 
not. Because when sleep descends, you are not present. And as long 
as you are present, sleep does not descend. 

You are sleeping every day, but you are not acquainted with your 
sleep, and how can the one who is not acquainted with his sleep be 
acquainted with himself? One who has pitch darkness within himself, 
a large continent of sleep - one who sleeps for eight hours daily and 
loses all consciousness — how can he reach to that profound state 
where consciousness is never lost? He cannot. 

Dreaming is to be shattered. The purpose of spiritual practices 
is to shatter and destroy this dreaming so that the waking state can 
become more awake, and a moment can come when the waking state 
is so awake that the dreams disappear. The day when the waking state 
is so alert that dreams have disappeared, that day you will experience 
sleep for the first time. You will witness your sleep. Then you will be 
sleeping, and you will also know that you are asleep. 

The day a man is aware in his sleep that he is sleeping, then 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

there is no way to make him behave unconsciously now he cannot 
act unconsciously, now anger is impossible. Now he cannot kill, he 
cannot steal, he cannot lie. Now all this is impossible, because the 
very source of the sleep which could have made him unconscious is 
destroyed. That poison which used to make him unconscious, which 
used to make him drowsy, is no more. 

When one is aware while sleeping, one attains to turiya - the fourth 

state. He who is awake in sleep reaches turiya. 

Now get ready for the morning meditation. First understand a few 
things: nothing happens with lukewarm effort,- use your total energy. 
Because the dream state is strong - it has been created over many 
lives - if you want to break it, then hit hard. 

Blindfolds are to remain on the eyes, and fast breathing is to be 
done for ten minutes. Fast, just like the bellows of a blacksmith. The 
kundalini has to be hit so hard that it can wake up. Breathe like a 
madman for ten minutes. Dancing and jumping will start on their 
own,- energy will arise because of the fast breathing. 

Then, in the second step, dance for ten minutes, jump, scream and 
laugh - whatever you wish to do, do it totally. Do not stand inactive,- 
do something - whatever comes to mind, do it. 

And in the third step, shout "Hoo," hit the kundalini hard with 

In the fourth step we will relax. 

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Chapter - 5 

The Individual Search 

When there is inactivity 

and rest of the fourteen instruments 

there is a lack of perception, 

and gross objects, such as sound and touch, 

are not experienced. 

This state is called sushupti, 
the sleeping state of the soul. 

The eternally witnessing consciousness 
which knows the presence or absence of the three states, 
and which is itself beyond presence or absence, 
is turiya. 

This is the fourth. 

Waking is the first state, dreaming is the second and sleeping is the 
third state. Sushupti, the sleeping state, means that there is neither 
an awareness of the outside world, nor is there any experience of 
objects or of any dreams created by their impressions in the mind. 
Consciousness is totally asleep, there is no trace of any awareness: 
consciousness is there but no awareness, life is there but completely 
asleep — without comprehension of any kind. The person becomes 
inanimate-living, yet inanimate, inert. 

So far we have discussed two states: when we open our eyes the 
outer world is seen, when we close our eyes, then what we have seen 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

outside is seen inside in our dreams. Something is always visible. 
The outside world may be absent, but still the forms created by it 
continually move on the mind’s screen. Something always remains on 
the screen of the mind. 

When this screen is empty, this state is called sushupti, the 
sleeping state. Then neither any outer objects nor any inner thoughts 
are perceived, the flow of all images ceases,- the screen is empty, it is 
blank, no awareness is left - that state is called sushupti. 

Now, there are a few very important things to understand here. 
First, it is necessary to understand that you are never aware of yourself. 
If you did have some awareness of yourself, then even if the outside 
world disappeared, and the inside world of dreams also disappeared, 
yet one point of awareness would still remain, that "I am." The sun, 
the moon and the stars may not be visible, your eyes may remain 
closed with no dreams flowing, but even then the awareness of "I 
exist" would still remain. But as it is you have no awareness of yourself, 
your awareness is object-oriented; you are aware of others, of objects, 
but not of yourself. 

So when all objects disappear your awareness disappears, the 
consciousness disappears. Whatever awareness you have is about 
others,- you have no awareness of yourself. When you stub your toe 
on a stone, you become aware of the stone and the experience of pain 
in your mind, but you are not aware of yourself, you are not aware of 
the one who is perceiving everything. 

Right now, 1 am speaking and you are listening. You are hearing 
my words, you are hearing by the vibrations in your ears, but you 
do not yet know the listener who is hidden behind all this. If the 
speaking stopped and the words falling on your ears disappeared 
and there was nothing resounding within, then you would have 
no awareness. 

That is why a few thinkers go to the extent of saying - and their 
statement is correct ninety-nine times out of a hundred - they say 


The Individual Search 

that nothing like consciousness exists,- your consciousness is only the 
echo within of the presence of other things. 

This third state of sleeping, becoming unconscious, discloses 
great mysteries. The first revelation is that we are in the great illusion 
that we already have consciousness. We have no consciousness. That 
is why sleep will immediately take over when you are unoccupied. It 
seems very difficult to remain awake while unoccupied. If you are not 
busy sleep will immediately start descending on you, so it is necessary 
to be busy. There is another side to it too: when you become too 
busy, sleep will not come in spite of your best efforts. It is night, you 
are lying on your bed, but your thoughts keep rushing everywhere 
nonstop and sleep does not come, because when your thoughts go 
on rushing about you have to be alert, you cannot sleep,- the object is 
present, although it is not of the outside world. 

If someone is playing the drums close to you, you cannot sleep. 
Why is that? Because that beat of the drum keeps your consciousness 
alert, it doesn’t allow you to sleep. But even if there are no drums 
being played and you are lying with your eyes closed, many thoughts 
will be rushing through your mind, fantasies will be going on in your 
mind, then also sleep will not come. Even if you are thinking about 
sleep, trying to sleep, you cannot. When you are thinking about how 
you can make yourself fall asleep, what you can do in order to fall 
asleep, sleep will not happen, because you will remain conscious as 
long as there is an object. And then, as soon as the object disappears, 
you will immediately drown in unconsciousness. 

So your consciousness is dependent on objects, you are not 
its master. If we understand it rightly, then deep down this is the 
bondage. We can remain awake if someone or something keeps us 
awake; if nothing keeps us awake, we immediately fall asleep. That is 
why man invents new sensations every day, otherwise life becomes 
boring. The same wife! — and life begins to lose its excitement,- so 
the husband wants to find a new woman. The same house! — and 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

life begins to lose excitement; so another house is needed. Only 
one type of food! — life begins to lose excitement; so every day one 
wants something new and different to eat. This desire for change is 
to keep ourselves awake, otherwise we will go to sleep — if there is 
no change we will fall asleep. Hence all methods to induce sleep use 
only one technique. 

All methods created to help people who cannot sleep use the 
simplest technique of repeating something. After a little while they 
get so bored because of the absence of anything new that there is no 
reason to be awake. Even if you repeat "Rama, Rama, Rama, Rama, 
Rama, Rama, Rama, Rama," you will fall asleep. That is why people 
who repeat mantras fall asleep and worshippers in temples get sleepy. 
There is simply no novelty, hence no challenge,- there is no point in 
staying awake. 

The mother pats the forehead of the child five or ten times - 
the same patting...the same patting...the same patting - and the 
child goes to sleep. There is nothing unusual in the patting; the 
child just gets bored. There’s nothing new happening, so the child 
goes to sleep. 

That is why you fall asleep more easily in your own room,- in a 
strange room it takes time because a strange room is unfamiliar. You 
fall asleep quite quickly on your own pillow or bed but it takes a 
long time to fall asleep in someone else’s bed,- there is something new 
which keeps you awake. Hence, everyone has his own sleeping ritual. 

A small child, feeling uneasy, puts his thumb in his mouth. In a few 
moments, because there is nothing new happening, he gets bored 
and falls asleep. There is not much difference between children and 
adults. Someone cannot sleep unless he smokes a cigarette at night. 
He smokes a cigarette - that is his substitute for sucking his thumb 
— then he goes to sleep. The daily routine makes one feel bored 
immediately. Sleep is also difficult in a new place, among new people, 
in a new house, because there are a lot of things around you which 

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The Individual Search 

keep you awake demanding your attention, your awareness - because 
something is new. 

Sleep has been disturbed in the West for the simple reason that 
the West is changing so fast that there is always something new. The 
East is at ease as far as sleep is concerned, but that will not last much 
longer. A villager will sleep deeply; someone living in a city cannot 
sleep so deeply. There is no particular reason for it except that the 
villager lives in old patterns, lives in boredom, there is nothing new to 
keep him awake. For someone in the city, every day there is something 
new: there are new films showing, a new newspaper is printed, there 
are new people to meet, new commodities are arriving on the market, 
shop windows are being decorated with new displays, there are new 
fashions, everything is new every day. The effect of all this novelty is 
that he is constantly awake and it is difficult to sleep. In the village 
everything is old; the same village, the same streets, the same people, 
everything is the same. 

If I go back to my village after one or two years I find that 
everything has remained the same. When I enter my village I know 
exactly which porter 1 will see at the railway station and he always 
meets me - he is the only porter. I know which tmgawalla will meet me 
and what he will talk about, because for years whenever I have gone 
there he has said the same things. And when the tonga goes through 
the village streets 1 know who will be sleeping outside his house and 
coughing. I know what will be going on in the village,- everything is 
predictable. 1 know already what will be happening, almost nothing 
has changed. Sometimes something does happen: someone in the 
village dies, someone is born — sometimes. Everything else goes on 
as usual. 

The East has had no problems about sleep, because everything was 
static. The West is in trouble,- everything is changing, and is changing 
so fast that after five years it is difficult to say whether your town is 
the same town because everything has changed so much. The ability 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

to sleep has been disturbed. If no object excites you sleep comes 
naturally- if there is excitement, you stay awake. 

This is a strange definition of sushupti, the sleeping state: that we 
have no awareness, no self-awareness,- we have no self-consciousness, 
we are only conscious of others. If others keep us awake we remain 
awake, if others stimulate us then we remain awake,- if others create 
some challenge, maintain some struggle or friction for us, then we 
stay awake. And if nobody keeps us awake we fall asleep at once, we 
disappear into the depths of sleep. 

Once I was staying in a village when a man was bitten by a 
snake. There was no physician in that village so he had to be taken 
to another. The elders of the village suggested to keep him awake, 
not to allow him to fall asleep, because if he fell asleep perhaps it 
would be impossible to revive him. So people took him to the next 
village keeping him awake, not allowing him to sleep, sprinkling 
water on him, making him sit up, shaking him so that he would not 
fall asleep. 

I also traveled with them for a while on that day in the same train, 
and suddenly it occurred to me that this man may have been bitten 
by a snake, but that all of us are also in the same condition. If people 
around us don’t keep us awake, we will also be lost and fall asleep. 
Someone continuously keeps us awake, a new sensation keeps us alert. 
That is why when a war starts peoples’ eyes become brighter and a 
freshness comes to their faces — something new is happening. In the 
morning they get the daily newspapers, and even those people who 
usually never get up early, wake up early and wait for the newspaper. 
What happens? It is surprising, you would think that war would bring 
sadness but it brings happiness, that war would bring anguish but it 
brings freshness. Even dead nations begin to throb with life,- blood 
starts circulating faster. Why? 

Psychologists say that, as man is, he has to continue to fight or he 
becomes totally lethargic and he has no taste for life. Something must 

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The Individual Search 

continue to happen somewhere, some sort of trouble, or we will just 
fall asleep. We are all bitten by snakes. 

This third state, the state of sleep, happens when no object 
excites us - neither within nor from the outside, neither in the 
world of thoughts nor in the world of objects. We are still alive, 
but unconscious. 

And the fourth state is called turiya. When someone has broken 
through the third state, then even if the whole external world 
vanishes still his consciousness will be there, awake. Even if the stars 
and the moon cool down and the earth disappears and everything 
is destroyed, nothing is left - if only I am, left all alone — even then 
I remain awake, I remain conscious. All around emptiness prevails, 
everything becomes insubstantial — I alone remain. Nothing to know, 
only the knower is left. No sounds to be heard, only the listener is 
left. Nothing to see, only the capacity to see remains. When all else 
is not and still I can remain in awareness, Indian seers have called this 
state the fourth state, the real state, the turiya. He who attains to this 
state attains to everything, he who has not attained to this state only 
goes on accumulating objects or ideas and remains deluded, remains 
under the illusion that "I know who I am." But if you take away his 
objects and thoughts he will be lost in his sleep and nothing will be 
left of him. 

If a man is very rich and someone steals his money, his agony is 
not only due to the loss of the money, but also to the fact that with 
the money a part of his soul is taken away, because he has no real 
soul as such; it is only in relation to the money. When we take away a 
palace from someone, it is not only the palace, his soul is also taken, 
because he has no real soul as such,- he has just an illusion of a soul in 
proportion to the size and grandeur of his palace. Now that his palace 
has been taken, his soul is lost in the same proportion. 

That is why for thousands of years on this earth, in this land, sanyas 
— the renunciation of "the world" — has been a unique experiment. I 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

will explain that experiment in this context to you. In fact sanyas is 
not a matter of renunciation, it is actually an effort to see whether, 
after having renounced everything, one still remains behind. 

It is not a question of renouncing the world because it is evil, 
and it is not a question of renouncing your home because there is 
something wrong with it, or of renouncing your wife because sex is a 
sin. Primarily the unique experiment of sanyas has been done to see 
whether you will remain when you have renounced everything. If you 
don’t remain, then you were not in the first place - "I was an illusion." 
And if you do remain even after renouncing everything — when you 
have found the wife is not "mine," the son is not "mine," the friend is 
not "mine," the house is not "mine," the money is not "mine" — when 
you stand totally naked, alone on the street, do you still exist? "If I 
exist, I have a soul; if 1 do not, I should seek a soul." 

The purpose of renunciation was not because possessions are evil, 
its purpose was to see whether you are just the sum total of your 
possessions or whether you exist independently, because it is difficult 
to get a clear understanding while surrounded by possessions. 

The seeker would go to the forest not because the city is evil, not 
because the truth is impossible to attain in the town, not because 
God is afraid to come to town - no, he can come there too! The 
seeker used to go into seclusion just to see whether he would remain 
conscious in aloneness or whether he would fall asleep, whether the 
awareness would remain or would he lose consciousness? When 
he had renounced everything, did something still remain or not? If 
something did remain, only then he has some small measure of a soul. 
If he does not have, he should now set out on the search for it; if he 
does have a soul, he should develop it. 

That is why when a Buddha or a Mahavira attains the truth, his 
soul, he comes back into the marketplace,- now there is no fear, now 
there is nothing to worry about, now he knows his reality. 

We do not exist independent of things at all, that is why we are so 

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The Individual Search 

attached to objects,- that attachment is not to the objects - they have 
become our souls. When someone takes your shirt, he is not only 
taking the shirt, he is almost taking your life. It is not only the shirt! 
If it had only been a shirt there would be no reason to suffer so much. 

Jesus said to his followers that if someone takes your coat, to give 
him the shirt too. Who knows, he may be in need but is hesitating 
to take it. That was not the reason why he said this, but so that you 
should not be so attached to your shirt that it becomes your soul. 
And if someone asks you to carry a load for one mile, then to carry 
it for two miles, so that you can feel that your body does not only 
belong to you, it belongs to the other as well. 

Consciousness manifests with the transcendence of sushupti. 

I have mentioned Gurdjieff. Gurdjieff used to tell his seekers: 
"Focus your eyes on the watch, on its second hand which is moving, 
and do a small experiment: be aware of the second hand and keep 
watching it, and remain aware, simultaneously, that you are aware 
of it." 

This is a small experiment, but not so small — if you do it, you 
will know that it is very difficult. It is easier to climb Everest,- this 
small experiment is very arduous. The second hand will complete its 
circle within one minute. Gurdjieff used to say that if you could be 
aware of it for the entire minute you have a little bit of soul. Even this 
much, for one minute.. .that the second hand is moving, and being 
aware at the same time that you are aware of it — a double-arrowed 
consciousness, a double-ended arrow - watching the hand and also 
watching yourself watching it. 

You will be surprised that it is not possible even for four seconds,- 
you get lost in between. It does not even last for four seconds - 
either the hand is forgotten or you forget yourself; you forget one 
of the two. 

It is difficult for you to remember for a single minute that "1 am." 
Your sleep must be very deep! If the second hand is forgotten, that 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

means you have fallen asleep. When do you forget the second hand? 
— you forget it when some other thought comes to you and your 
attention is diverted. If the second hand is not forgotten and you are 
putting your attention forcibly on it, you lose the focus that you were 
directing on yourself. 

The condition of man seems to be very pitiable — that even for 
a whole minute man cannot remember that he exists. But there is 
a reason for it. The reason is that we have never been outside the 
current of sleep,- deep down we are continuously asleep. At the most 
a slight uneasiness can be felt from the outside, as when a man is 
sleeping and you pull his legs, then he turns over, opens his eyes 
a little, mutters something and falls asleep again - that is all. Our 
waking state is similar to that. 

Man is helpless,- he feels hunger, so he has to get up in the morning. 
He is helpless,- he has to attend to his jobs, feed the children, he has 
to go to the office - moving automatically, as if someone is pulling his 
legs in his sleep. And as soon as there is a gap he falls asleep. 

If you are given the chance to sleep for twenty-four hours, would 
you then want to be awake? If someone arranged for you to sleep 
for twenty-four hours, would you then want to stay awake? No, you 
stay awake out of compulsion. That is why those who can afford it, 
they even induce sleep by taking alcohol,- now they are not obliged 
to keep awake. Those who have more choices drown themselves in 
LSD, marijuana, mescaline... 

Whenever a society is able to gather even a little affluence, the 
first thing it spends excess money on is alcohol. Forget about the 
society: any man who can afford some luxury first spends his money 
on alcohol. Why? Why is there such a keen desire to be unconscious? 
Is consciousness so painful? The consciousness which we know is 
very painful. It is like somebody is forcibly shaking you the whole 
time to keep you awake, but as soon as there is even the slightest let¬ 
up you drown in sleep. 

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The Individual Search 

We are filled with layers of sleep, we are stuffed with sleep. This is 
the third state and the seeker must know it rightly, because there is no 
way to reach to the fourth without shattering this third state. 

The sage says: 

When there is inactivity 

and rest of the fourteen instruments, 

there is a lack of perception, 

and gross objects, such as sound and touch, 

are not experienced. 

This state is called sushupti, 
the sleeping state of the soul. 

The eternally witnessing consciousness 
which knows the presence or absence of the three states, 
and which is itself beyond presence or absence, 
is turiya. 

This is the fourth. 

These are the three states — waking, dreaming and sleeping — but 
to whom do these states belong? Who is it that goes through all these 
three states? Who is it? Who is awake? Who sees the dreams? Who 
falls asleep? Certainly he must be separate from all these. 

You pass through one railway station, then through the second, 
then through the third - these are three stations,- certainly the one 
who is traveling must be separate from these. You are not the station, 
otherwise how could you reach the second station? You are not the 
second station because you reach the third; and you are not the third 
because you come back to the second and to the first. 

Man wakes up, dreams and sleeps,- then again he falls asleep, wakes 
up and dreams - he moves through all three. So the sage says that the 
one who moves through these three is the fourth, he cannot be one 
of these three. 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

What can we do? How is it possible? - how to shatter this sushupti? 
Sleep is surrounding us everywhere. We walk sleepily, we stand 
sleepily, we sit sleepily.. .whatever we are doing, we do it sleepily. 

Buddha was walking on a path. This is an incident from before he 
was enlightened. A friend was walking beside him, and a fly came and 
sat on Buddha’s shoulder. Buddha continued his conversation with 
the friend, kept walking on the path, and waved away the fly with his 
hand. Then he stood still. The friend asked, "Did the fly bite you?" 
But Buddha closed his eyes, did not reply to his friend, raised his 
hand, moved the hand to where the fly had been sitting, brushed 
away the fly — which was not there — and brought his hand down. The 
friend asked, "Have you gone mad? The fly flew away the first time, 
what are you brushing away now?" 

Buddha said, "Now I have brushed away the fly as I should have 
done it before. I had brushed it away unconsciously. The hand moved 
as if in sleep. I was not awake, 1 was occupied in conversation with 
you. The hand moved and brushed the fly away, and then 1 became 
aware that the fly had flown away and I had done it unconsciously. I 
was doing it in my sleep. To disrupt my unconsciousness 1 then did it 
the way 1 should have done it the first time. This hand was raised and 
with it arose the consciousness,- this hand then touched the shoulder 
consciously and brushed the fly away. 

"When I brushed away this second fly, I was aware of what I was 
doing and I was also aware of my awareness of what I was doing. This 
is double-arrowed consciousness." Buddha said, "If a fly sits on me 
again, I will brush it away like this. It was just a little practice,- let us 
go on." 

If we look at our lives from this angle, all our activities appear 
to be done in sleep. Can a man who does not even remove a fly 
unconsciously be angry? Can he abuse someone? Can he be jealous? 
Can he be hateful? All these things happen only in sleep; with 
consciousness they begin to drop. 

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The Individual Search 

Ananda was with Buddha for many years. One day he asked 
Buddha, "Everything is okay, but there is one thing I don’t understand: 
do you sleep in the night or not?" 

Buddha said, "You know that I go to sleep daily." 

Ananda said, "1 do see that, but wherever you put your foot, it 
remains there for the whole night, and wherever you put your hand, 
it stays there. Last night I kept awake just to see whether you moved 
your hands or not, whether you changed sides, but everything 
remained in the same place. Do you take care not to move the whole 
night? How do you sleep? Do you really sleep?" 

Buddha replied, "Once it did happen that I changed sides without 
awareness. But then, since that day 1 have not changed sides,- I have 
stopped changing sides altogether. What is the need to associate 
with such things? 1 sleep, but 1 am awake inside. The hand should 
remain there where I have put it,- it is mine, and if it moves without my 
permission I become a slave, 1 cease to be the master." 

So start becoming alert in the waking state. Start waking up in 
this state which we call "being awake." Go on becoming alert. Try: 
make the effort and wake up. Slowly, slowly, when full alertness has 
happened in the waking state, then you can move further. One who 
has become alert in the waking state suddenly becomes aware of his 
dreams while he is dreaming. And as soon as he is aware of this the 
dreams disappear, because dreams cannot take place when you are 
aware,- unawareness is a must for dreams. 

And when your dreams disappear, the awakening enters into the 
third state,- the arrow of awakening enters into sushupti, and then one 
is also aware when one is asleep. It means that one knows that the 
body is relaxing, that is all. Sleep is a relaxation for such a person, 
whereas your way of sleeping is just hard work. 

Look at a sleeping man then you will know. He is working even 
harder in his sleep than he did the whole day — throwing his hands 
around, banging his head, making faces, and what not. People have 

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been filmed while they were asleep and these films have been later 
shown to them. They were shocked and said, "Do I do all this? It’s 
impossible; there must be some cheating, some trick." If you were 
filmed while asleep during the night and it was shown to you in the 
morning, you would know that you also do this. So much, so much 
disturbance even in sleep! No peace even in sleep? 

Even our sleep is an exertion, whereas for the aware person even 
the waking state is a relaxation. We are tired when we get up after 
sleeping because we have been doing so much the whole night that 
it is beyond imagination. I am not exaggerating. We get up tired even 
after sleeping the whole night, and this is a daily routine: we fall asleep 
exhausted after the day’s tiring work, and get up in the morning 
exhausted from the night. 

Our life is a long fatigue, a burden which we go on carrying. We 
could never get rid of it if there were no death. Death comes and 
takes away the burden forcibly. But we are so full of lust and we are 
so attached to the burden that as soon as we die, our consciousness 
sets out for a new birth — in search of a new burden, in search of 
new diseases, new troubles. As soon as the arrow of consciousness 
enters into the sleeping state, it transcends our deep sleep, then sleep 
remains only as rest for the body. 

Krishna has said in the Gita that a yogi does not sleep even 
in his sleep. He did not say that the yogi stands all night with 
open eyes as some madmen do. This is madness! This is another 
madness. Some madmen are unable to sleep even with closed eyes, 
some madmen stand with open eyes to avoid sleeping, because 
Krishna said that a yogi does not sleep even in his sleep - but they 
have not understood. He has not said to stand open-eyed. But 
there are people... 

Sometime ago I happened to be in a village. There is a Khade Shri 
Baba, "Standing Baba" there. The people asked me whether I knew 
about Khade Shri Baba. "What happened to him?" I asked. 

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The Individual Search 

"He is called Khade Shri Baba because he has been standing for 
ten years." 

I told them, "Take him to a doctor - what can 1 do? Try to make 
him sit somehow, put him to sleep." 

But now he cannot be seated, his legs are swollen due to 
elephantitis. His legs have stored excessive blood, all the veins have 
become stiff; now he cannot sit. 1 told the people, "Do something, 
make him now Baithe Shri Baba, ‘Sitting Baba.’ Don’t hesitate. His 
intelligence is totally lost. It is bound to be ; all the blood has gone to 
his legs and nothing is left for the brain. Look at his eyes, they are as 
dead as stone. This man is suffering death while he is alive." 

Why is he standing? Man can do anything for the ego. People 
are bowing their heads at his feet, offering flowers, offering money, 
temples are being constructed in his name! The exchange is not costly, 
it is cheap; he gets so many temples, so many flowers and so many 
bowing heads! As I see him, he is utterly stupid. He can try hard for 
fifty lifetimes and he won’t be able to make a single temple through 
his own creativity. So this deal costs him nothing. And by now the 
practice is strong, now a tremendous amount of massage would be 
needed to reverse the practice. It is very difficult; it is unlikely that his 
legs will ever bend again. He is just standing like an idiot. 

Somewhere, if Krishna happens to meet him, he will sue Krishna; 
"Why did you say in the Gita that a yogi does not sleep even in 
the sleeping state?" Krishna used to sleep normally. He never slept 
standing! But still we don’t see the true message in the Gita. No 
intelligent person has remained standing. Those who bow to the 
feet of this yogi don’t even ask him, "Krishna didn’t do this practice, 
Buddha never did this practice, Christ never did it — are you trying to 
go ahead of them all?" But this does not occur to us. 

This awareness which does not sleep even during the sleeping 
state... When the body falls asleep, when all its fibers and nerves 
fall asleep, when everything sleeps, the flame of awareness remains 

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burning within. The sun remains with its sunlight even when 
surrounded by the clouds. 

When this sushupti is transcended, turiya, the fourth state, is 
attained. It is called a "state" for the sake of language,- otherwise it is 
not a state, it is our nature. We are already "that." It is not that first 
we are in illusion and then we are changed. No, our illusion is just like 
when a stick is immersed in water. In the water it looks deformed, but 
it is not deformed, it only looks that way. Take it out, and again it is 
straight — it does not become straight, it was straight already. When 
it looked deformed, even then it was straight. When it is taken out, 
it looks straight. Water only creates the illusion in its appearance, not 
in its being. 

So when the consciousness is in the three lower states — in 
sushupti, in dreams and in the waking state — it appears to be lost, 
but it is never lost, not in the least,- it only appears to be so. When 
consciousness is reclaimed it only appears as if it is attained - it has 
not been attained, it was already there. But this illusion does happen. 
And without shattering this illusion that consciousness is to be 
attained, no glimpse of bliss is possible in life,- without shattering this 
illusion there can be no taste of the nectar of bliss,- without shattering 
this illusion there is no possibility of realizing the truth. 

If illusion has to be shattered, understanding is necessary but not 
enough, understanding is essential but still not enough. One has to 
move, one has to travel. We have already made a journey, now we 
have to come back. We have moved far away from our home, now it 
has to be searched for again. There can be thousands of paths for this 
search; take any single path and you can reach there. 

But generally I see that there are three types of people. There 
are a few who are afraid of doing anything - so they call all this 
nonsense and nonexistent. They say that these things do not exist. 
1 know many people who deny the existence of God - not because 
they have some enmity with God, not because they know that God 

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The Individual Search 

does not exist, not because they are atheists, but because they are 
simply lethargic. If God does exist they will have to move, it will 
be troublesome. It is better to deny God from the very beginning. 
This makes them free from uncertainty and they settle happily 
into their lethargy. Why search for that which doesn’t exist? If it 
does exist, you will start feeling anxious even though you don’t 
search. If God is and you remain lying on your bed, you will begin 
to feel anxious. Somewhere within you a call will vibrate to search 
for that which is. 

Thus, many times I see religious people having a cover of 
irreligiousness - just so that they need not move, need not go 
anywhere or do anything. Their lethargy becomes their atheism. 
There are others who do not make their lethargy atheism. They are 
more clever,- they make their lethargy theism. They remain settled in 
their laziness and only talk about God. 

It is very easy to become an expert in talking about God. It is not 
so easy to talk about other things because you may land yourself in 
trouble. If you make a statement about a stone, you will have to prove 
it in the laboratory. But regarding God you may say what you like,- 
it can neither be proved nor disproved. There is no way to prove it, 
either right or wrong. That is why talk about God is so interesting 
and even the dullest person can take part in it, hence those who do 
nothing indulge in talking about God. 

If they make some statement about the earth they will have to face 
troubles,- but about heaven — no trouble. If you draw a map of this 
place, Matheran, you will have to prove it right, you will have to take 
measurements, and there will be a thousand other problems. Why 
create trouble? Draw the map of Satyakband, "The Realm of Truth," 
or draw the map of Brabmlok, "The World of the Absolute," then 
nobody on earth can challenge you because you are out of the range 
of challenge. People are sitting in their armchairs and talking about 
God. They don’t even move from there. They regard themselves as 

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theists, but they are not. Theism is not satisfied with just talking, it 
demands experience. 

So there are a few who deny all this, and for them there is nowhere 
to go. There are others who accept all this and say it is already known 
to them, and for them also there is nowhere to go, "Whatever exists, 
it is all in the scriptures. Saints and sages have already said these 
things" — so now there is no need for them to search. 

Remember it, this is the basic difference between religion and 
science: in science, once a thing is discovered others don’t need to 
discover it again,- but in religion, if a thing is discovered, don’t be 
mistaken that it has been discovered forever and you don’t need to 
search for it anymore. Religion is an individual search,- every individual 
has to search for it again and again. And this is the beauty; this is why 
religion is always fresh, it is never stale. Science becomes stale. Today, 
Newton is totally stale, but this Sarvasar Upanishad is still fresh - 
because the search is to be made again and again. 

Religion is like love. You don’t say, "Look, Majnu has loved, Farhad 
has already loved, so why should I take the trouble? Everything has 
been written about love - we will read about it, learn about it, write 
poetry about it, why take the trouble of being in love?" 

No, someone may have loved a lot, Farhad may have loved a lot, 
but this cannot satisfy you, you will have to fall in love yourself. You will 
not be contented until you yourself are in love. Love is an individual 
experience. Millions and millions of people may have loved, it makes 
no difference. It is never stale. You have to love again, and when you 
do love you know it; prior to that you do not know. 

There is no way to know about love from Farhad, or from Buddha 
either. Religion is like love, this search is like a love-affair: it is to be 
discovered again and again. 

The fourth, out of which the three states are born - sleep comes, 
dreams arise and waking happens, then all three again dissolve back 
into this fourth - this fourth is neither born out of anything nor 

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The Individual Search 

dissolves into anything. It is the eternal principle of life, it is the basis 
of life,- this is the very beginning and this is the very end, and he who 
has not known it wanders in the middle, in the cycle of life and death. 

Enough for today. 

Now prepare for the experiment. A few words about the 
experiment: yesterday the dust created so much trouble for you, so 
today those who want to do it vigorously should remain on the raised 
area, and others can spread out all over the ground. 

Revolutionary results can come during this experiment, but for 
that you have to put your total energy into it. That is why I have 
scheduled it for the night. The morning and afternoon experiments 
will encourage you and make you able to put your total energy at 
stake in this night experiment. 

After this you will go to sleep, so don t worry about tiredness. At 
the most you will become tired! There is no harm in it. You will go 
into deep sleep, nothing else will happen. 

So it is essential to put your total energy into it. 

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Chap ter - 6 j 

The Physical and Energy Bodies 

The assemblage of cells created by food 
is the attnamay kosh, the physical body. 

When the fourteen different winds, 

such as the prana wind, act in the physical body, 

they form the pranamay kosh, the energy body. 

Man as a whole is made up of many layers, and a right understanding of 
all these layers is necessary in order to go beyond them. It is essential 
to know that which we have to transcend, it is essential to recognize 
that which we have to get rid of. How a man appears from outside is 
not his complete body, it is only the first layer of his many bodies. 
When we look at a person, what we see at first glance the sages have 
called annamay kosh, the physical body. 

This body is inherited from the parents, it is not yours,- this layer 
is not you, this layer has a long tradition behind it. Thousands of 
bodies have created your body. The first cell you inherit from your 
parents contains the complete inbuilt processes of your body all the 
potentialities of its growth are hidden in it. 

Now the scientists say that whatever is manifested in your body 
throughout the whole of your life is all hidden in that first seed cell — 
apart from this cell nothing new can happen. The color of your eyes, 
the color of your hair, the color of your skin, your life span, whatever 

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The Physical and Energy Bodies 

will blossom in your personality, all this is hidden in that cell. But that 
is not you. That body has had its own long journey: you received it 
from your parents, they received it from their parents — it has had a 
long journey, a long journey of millions of years. 

If we trace back in the body we will find that the whole history 
of the universe is hidden in each man s body. Something of your 
body must have been present on the day when this world came into 
existence for the first time ; by and by that same part has developed 
to become your present body. The whole story of existence is 
hidden in this small seed cell. It is not yours, it has a long tradition. 
That cell has traveled up to you through many human beings, many 
animals, innumerable plants and minerals. That is your first layer,- 
that layer the sages call annamay kosh, the physical body. It is called 
annamay kosh because the process of its creation is through food, it 
is created by food. 

The whole of the human body changes every seven years,- 
everything changes — bones, flesh, marrow — everything is changed. 
If a man lives for seventy years his body has been renewed ten times. 
The food you take in daily creates your body, and every day you throw 
out the dead cells from your body. When we say that someone has 
died, it refers to his final death, when his soul departs from the body. 
Otherwise, man is dying every day, his body is dying continuously. 
When you cut your nails you don’t feel any pain because the nails 
are dead parts of your body. When you cut your hair there is no pain 
because it consists of the dead cells of your body. If the hair was a 
living part of your body, then you would feel pain when you cut it. 

Your body is renewing itself daily. It is surprising that often the 
hair and nails of dead persons grow in the grave. Because nails and 
hair have nothing to do with life, they can continue to grow on dead 
bodies,- they are the dead parts, they can continue their growth. 

Food is giving your body new cells daily, and the dead part is 
discarded by your body every day. This is a constant process. That 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

is why the body is called annamay kosh - because it is created by the 
anna, the food. 

Hence many things will depend on what type of food you eat. 
Many things depend on your food. Your food is not only supporting 
your life, it is also creating the first layer of your personality. And 
whether you can begin on your inner journey or not depends a lot on 
this layer, because all food is not the same. There are some types of 
food which will not allow you to go within, they will keep you tied 
to the outer world,- some types of food will not allow the growth of 
consciousness within you because they will keep you unconscious. 
Some types of food will not allow you peace and tranquility because 
the process of digestion itself creates a disturbance in your body, 
disease. There are unhealthy foods, healthy foods, pure foods and 
impure foods. 

Pure food is that which does not create difficulties for the inner 
journey - that is all, there is no other criterion. Pure food only 
means that it will not create a body that will be an obstacle on your 
inner journey. 

Someone may build the walls of his house with solid stones, 
another may build the walls with only glass. Glass is transparent; 
standing outside, you can look inside. A solid stone wall will not allow 
you to look inside from the outside. 

The body can also be as transparent as glass. Food is considered 
to be pure when it makes the body transparent — so that it gives you 
glimpses of the inner even while you are moving outside. You can 
also make this body such a dense wail that the inner journey is totally 
forgotten and glimpses of the inner being can never occur. 

The purpose of satvik and asatvik food, pure and impure food, 
is that your physical body, the first layer, can become transparent. 
Only then the inward journey begins. Only when the first layer has 
become transparent can the second be known, not otherwise. We 
may never know that there is another body within this body. This is 

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The Physical and Energy Bodies 

the reason for the emphasis on satvik food. The meditator knows that 
another body exists inside this physical body, because his first layer 
has become transparent and glimpses of the second layer have begun. 

Then there are ways to make the second layer transparent, and 
then glimpses of the third body begin to come. The third body can 
also be made transparent, and then comes the fourth. When the 
fourth has become transparent, the fifth is there. And when the fifth 
becomes transparent, glimpses of that which is bodiless, beyond all 
the bodies, begin to come. So you can make your body as solid as a 
stone wall or as transparent as glass. 

The sage, therefore, begins with the first: the physical body. This 
body around you is certainly created by food; there is nothing in it 
which is derived from any other source. It may be that your father ate 
that food, or your grandfather ate that food, it makes no difference,- 
there is nothing in this body except food. When analyzed, the human 
sperm and egg which creates the first cell shows nothing except the 
elements of food. The essence of the food is contained in the seed. 

Wise ones have done great experiments in relation to this. For 
thousands of years, generation after generation, a few families dared 
to live only on vegetarian food. No transformation can happen in the 
body within one day,- the body has a long, complex history. But if 
a family has lived on vegetarian food for thousands of generations, 
there is radical change in the body. The same happens with non¬ 
vegetarian food, then too the body radically changes. Through 
constant refinement, becoming purer and purer over a long, long 
period of time, the very seed cell is altered. And only when the seed 
cell is altered, does transparency happen. 

To transform the whole body by changing the food eaten was a 
unique experiment. Now scientists also agree that whatever we take 
in changes the body. 

The difference between the male body and the female body is only 
a few hormones and nothing else. The difference is very small. These 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

hormones are also created by food. If we take just a few hormones out 
of the female body it will start changing into a male body. If we take 
just a few hormones out of the male body it will start changing into a 
female body. It will not be long before a person born as a man will be 
able to choose to become a woman, or someone born as a woman will 
be able to choose to become a man, because the difference is of only 
a few hormones — only a few — and hormones are food. Hormones are 
the essence created by food. A small hormonal difference creates the 
difference between a man and a woman. 

A little change in your food can also make intelligence sharp 
or dull, because if the nutrients that are needed do not reach the 
brain through food, intelligence becomes dull. Then, in spite of your 
potential, intelligence will not flower, because this flowering needs 
the help of the physical body which is then not available. Then 
intelligence becomes totally dull because the substance at the third 
eye center in the pineal gland is not produced. In fact, when a man 
drinks alcohol it is not intelligence which is affected - alcohol does 
not affect consciousness - but the pineal gland stops producing 
its fluid and intelligence is lost. Alcohol does not directly affect 
intelligence, but it affects that part in the physical body which is 
related to intelligence and it then becomes inactive. 

A madness has started spreading all over the world from the 
West: the use of things like LSD. Scientists say that lysergic acid, or 
mescaline, or things like that also affect the pineal gland, and the fluid 
secreted by the pineal gland, which in turn obstructs intelligence. So 
it will not be surprising if the new generation in the West which uses 
LSD brings down the whole of the Western civilization because it is 
sure to harm the intelligence which is its very foundation. 

Certainly if man s intelligence falls he is free from a kind of 
bondage, because intelligence also brings its own kind of limitations 
and he becomes free from them. It is a great mistake to think that 
freedom from those limitations is freedom, because freedom comes 

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The Physical and Energy Bodies 

in two ways: it can come by going beyond limitations, or it can come 
by falling below the limitations. The freedom that goes below is just 
madness, and the freedom attained by going beyond the limitations 
is the ultimate state. So they are purchasing cheap liberation through 
chemicals. But even that is only a chemical, a food. 

This body, our first layer, is the layer of food. Hence the right 
choice of food is significant - it is not only a superstition. To be a pure 
vegetarian gives a flexibility to the body which is not available to the 
non-vegetarian. The physical body layer of a non-vegetarian slowly, 
slowly becomes like an animal body. 

It is amazing that you don t realize that the meat you eat is the 
creation of those animals, it is an organic part of those animals. You 
take that meat directly into your body and thus slowly you start 
making your own organic system animal-like. That system will affect 
you. That system will make your body a solid stone wall. Perhaps the 
reason why animals could not grow in intelligence is mostly because 
of their physical body. The intelligence which has evolved within you 
will slowly be reversed with the accumulation of animal flesh in your 
body. And very small things can make revolutionary changes - so 
small that we cannot even comprehend that they could do so. 

Scientists say that the growth of intelligence in the human brain was 
possible because he stood up on his hind legs,- had he been moving on 
his hands and feet his brain could not have evolved. It is such a small 
thing that it is amazing that it has made so much difference, such as 
the difference in intelligence between a monkey and a man, a man and 
a dog - what a tremendous difference there is between an Einstein 
and a monkey! And scientists say that this difference is due to such 
a small thing: standing up on our hind legs. How could it happen? It 
happened because the flow of blood to the brain was reduced; blood 
now had to be pumped upwards to the brain. When the flow was 
reduced the brain could grow tender tissues, subtle nerves. If the 
flow is fast, the subtle nerves are destroyed. Animals have a constant 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

large flow of blood towards the brain: that is why subtle nerves do not 
grow. It is like a river flowing very fast and not allowing the tiny plants 
to grow,- not even the tiny pebbles can stay. They are all flushed away, 
thrown away. 

The only reason so much evolution of human intelligence 
became possible is that the brain received less blood. This is also 
why when you get up in the morning after a night’s sleep your 
intelligence is fresh. Using your intelligence the whole day, by 
nighttime you get so tired you fall asleep, and during sleep more 
blood reaches to your brain. 

So there is not much difference between our sleep and an animal’s 
sleep. The difference is in the waking states. Howsoever you look, 
you can t tell the difference between a sleeping man and a sleeping 
animal, or can you? No, all the differences begin in the waking state 
of a man and an animal. 

A sage is asleep and a sinner is asleep — in deep sleep, can you 
tell the difference? You may surgically analyze their brains, but can 
you differentiate through this as to who is the sage and who is the 
sinner? No difference can be found during deep sleep. In fact, no 
difference remains in sleep,- all the difference lies in the waking state. 
The differences begin when we stand up on our hind legs. One is an 
enlightened being, one is an Einstein and one is an idiot. But all this 
difference is in the waking state: when no large flow of blood reaches 
to the brain then these differences of subtle nerves arise. 

Have you ever noticed that for a good sleep you need pillows 
under your head? Remove the pillow and sleep becomes difficult, 
because when you remove the pillow the blood rushes to the brain. 
In fact the structure of the human head is such that if one sleeps 
without a pillow the head becomes a basin. In sleep, compared to 
the whole body the head is at the lowest level, and the flow of blood 
runs fast towards the head. The flow is so fast that it does not allow 
the tissues to relax, then it becomes difficult to sleep. That is why, as 

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The Physical and Energy Bodies 

the intelligence of man grows, more pillows are also required. There 
is a reason for this: as the tender tissues grow within they need to 
be protected otherwise there will be no sleep,- the tender tissues will 
vibrate so fast that sleep will not be possible. 

This is such a small thing, but scientists say that it radically changed 
man. I am telling you this small incident just as an example so that you 
understand that food might not be such a small issue. Small things can 
make a great difference. 

Scientists say that because man stood erect, families could come 
into existence; otherwise they would never have happened. Who 
would have thought that there could be a relationship between man 
standing erect and the birth of the family? And when there is no 
family, there can be no civilization or culture either, because culture 
and civilization are the expansion of the family. But could you have 
ever imagined that standing erect might have anything to do with the 
existence of the family? 

Scientists say that the phenomenon of love was born because 
man stood erect, otherwise it could not have come into existence. 
You cannot imagine that standing erect has anything to do with love, 
but this is how it happened. And researchers are unanimous about 
it. While animals make love they don’t face each other - they can’t. 
While animals make love they don’t face each other because they 
approach from behind. Scientists say it is because man stood erect 
and stopped approaching from behind, when having sex man could 
face his partner — copulation took the face-to-face position — and 
when we can see someone’s face only then the idea of the person s 
personality occurs, otherwise it does not. So when a man makes love 
with a woman face to face, a relationship between their faces, between 
them, is soon established. 

It is interesting to note that all bodies are so similar. There 
is not much difference, only faces differ. And it is the faces which 
carry personality. If you were all beheaded, your bodies would be 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

difficult to recognize. But faces can be recognized because they 
have individuality, the expression of your personality is in your face. 
Human beings could see each other’s faces during lovemaking, so 
sexual desire was transformed into love...and personal relationships 
grew, families began to come into existence, and slowly the rest of the 
body became secondary and the face became important. For animals 
the face is not important at all. A deep relationship with the face 
never developed. Scientists say that because man stood erect the 
family, love, culture and civilization could then come into existence - 
that such a small thing could be so significant! 

So food is not a small thing; it is a big thing, immensely important, 
because it creates our whole body. Whatever we take into our bodies 
has its own quality and that quality will become the quality of our 
bodies in a few days’ time. If we suddenly ask someone who is always 
pouring alcohol into his body to stop drinking, he will not be able to 
stop abruptly. Why is that? Because now it is not he who is drinking, 
but rather each and every cell of his body that drinks - each and 
every cell! It is out of his control; now every pore in his body has 
started drinking - every cell. There are millions and millions of cells 
in a human body, and each and every cell has started drinking; every 
cell has become a drunkard. This is called addiction. There is no other 
reason for addiction. 

When we say that someone is addicted, that means that it is not he 
who is drinking, but each and every cell in his whole body is saying, 
"Drink now, otherwise you won’t be able to function - you can’t walk, 
you can’t stand, you can’t sit." Now it is very difficult to drop it, 
because millions of lives within you are asking you to drink - millions 
and millions of living cells! You are a big crowd, a big city,- you are not 
alone, you are living in that big city. 

Hence we chose the word purush for the soul. Purush means, the 
resident of the big city, the dweller in the big city, purush. Every person 
has a big city within their body - a big city! It is not a small town. You 

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The Physical and Energy Bodies 

have millions and millions of lives around you, and when all of them 
make demands you are in a great difficulty, you will have to fulfill their 
demands. You cannot get out of this situation even if you wanted to. 

So what you take as food creates these millions of cells and their 
subsequent demands. And then you have to live in a bondage with 
them, and these bonds become a barrier to the inner journey. 

We call that food satvik which does not create addiction - food 
which only gives the body energy and does not intoxicate it. You have 
to understand this distinction clearly: satvik is that food which gives 
the body energy but does not intoxicate it, that food which supplies 
the needs of the body but does not create madness in the body, that 
food which fulfills the needs of the body but does not become just an 
indulgence for it. 

To whatever extent something intoxicates your body, the body 
will be polluted to the same degree. But we don’t think about this, 
we don’t consider it,- we don’t care about what we eat, we don t care 
about what we drink, we go on doing the same as the crowd is doing. 

India, more than any other country, has made great advances in 
researching the principles of food. Perhaps it was first realized in India 
that for the inner journey, for the journey within, first the body has to 
be transformed. This body as it is at present is not fit for the journey. 

Pavlov was doing experiments on dogs — great experiments,- he 
worked hard on it for some fifty years. He discovered if you remove 
just a small gland from a dog, even from a ferocious dog who was a 
killer just a moment before, that now however hard you try the dog 
will not get angry even if he is beaten or tortured, because this small 
poisoned gland has been removed. What happened? Only a little 
poison was taken out, and that poison had come from the dog’s food. 
So without removing the poison, but simply by changing the dog s 
food to something which does not produce this poison, he will not 
be vicious anymore. 

Violence in man comes from the poisons produced within his body. 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

If those poisons are removed from his body he will not be violent 
again, so a large number of physiologists say that it is nonsense to call 
murderers criminals, they are only ill. A particular poison is produced 
in their bodies. What can they do? So to punish them or to hang 
them is totally mad. If B.F. Skinner, a great American thinker and 
psychologist, were to succeed in getting the world to agree that the 
criminals should be operated on — that they are not criminals, that it 
would only be necessary to remove a few glands and they would not 
be able to murder or be violent again. 

But if a scientist or a laboratory, a society or a state were to 
remove your glands, you would become a slave. If you are unable 
to get angry, then what is the value of your compassion? Impotence 
is not nonviolence,- to be impotent does not mean to be nonviolent. 
Scientists can operate on you... You don’t even have to alter your 
diet, you can go on eating whatever you eat, but your glands can 
be removed, the system which creates the poisons can be destroyed 
- then you will not be able to get angry, you will not be able to be 
violent, to murder. But that will not be due to any virtue on your 
part and it will not take you on your inner journey. You will have only 
become impotent. 

But another process has been discovered, and that process does 
not put pressure on you from the outside or cripple some part of 
your body, that process allows your body to remain as it is — it is 
for you to voluntarily change the quality of the food you eat for an 
inner transformation to take place. Then slowly, slowly your body 
can become free of those poisons which lead you to crime and 
wrongdoing, and free you from those stimuli which lead you to focus 
only on the external. 

And just the opposite is also possible. This is only one half of the 
coin - the negative half - which produces the poisons within you 
which are responsible for your anger. Is it also possible to produce 
that nectar in you which makes you compassionate? Skinner has no 

I 118 | 

knowledge of it as yet. If you have a gland which makes you male or 
female and which creates in you the lust for the opposite sex, might 
it not also be possible to produce something within you which could 
set you free from this attraction? 

Of course, you can be freed from this attraction by means of 
an operation, but that is falling below,- then you are only becoming 
impotent. But if your whole capacity of being male or female remains 
and along with it that nectar starts flowing within you which takes you 
beyond the attraction for the opposite sex - where even the thought 
of being a man or a woman is forgotten — then you are rising up, the 
energy is moving upwards. 

The physical body is the first thing. 

The second layer of the body, this second layer the sages have 
called pranamay kosh, the vital body. You will know it as soon as the first 
body becomes transparent, otherwise it will remain only hypothetical. 
Hidden beneath this first body is the vital body. The prana body means 
the energy body, the vital body. 

This is the difference between a stone and a living being: a stone 
has only one body — the physical body. A plant has one more body 
within - the pranamay body. A plant has two bodies, a stone has only 
one body. A plant has two bodies, so a plant is not just a stone; there 
is something in it similar to a stone, surrounding it on the outside, but 
inside there flows a life-stream. Even a plant is young at one time and 
then becomes old,- when it is full of life’s juices it is joyous, when its 
life is diminished it is sad. 

In the morning when the sun rises a stone remains as a stone, and 
at night the stone also remains as a stone. But a plant is one thing at 
night and something else in the morning,- a stream of life exists within 
it, an energy body which becomes blissful with the rising sun. This 
energy that it receives from the sun goes to its energy body. The 
stone remains a stone during the night and it is still a stone in the 
morning,- a stone is not affected by the sun. 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

When I say a stone, notice that I am not saying a mountain, 
because a mountain is affected; a mountain is alive. A few mountains 
are young - for example the Himalayan range is still young, is still 
growing. The Vindhyachal range has grown old. 

There is a lovely story that Vindhyachal bowed its head to say 
good-bye to a sage who was setting out on a journey and the sage did 
not return, so it remains with its head bowed. The truth is something 
else. The Vindhya range is an ancient range - the oldest on earth - 
the Himalayan range is just a child; Vindhya is the oldest. Long ago it 
bowed its head and its neck became weak, it became old. 

That story is mythology, but it is lovely. The myth says that now 
the mountain range has become so old that it can’t hold its head up. 
Now, even if the sage were to return, it could not raise its head. But 
the Himalayan range is still rising, growing every day. It is difficult to 
say how much more it will grow. 

It is interesting that the Rigveda does not mention the Himalayas. 
Yet it is impossible that something like the Himalayas should 
be missing from it. It is impossible that a mountain range like the 
Himalayas, with the peaks of Everest and Mount Kailash shining in 
the sky, that they would be there and the sage not sing a song of 
their glory - it is impossible. In fact when the sage sang his song 
the Himalayas had not yet been born. There appears to be no other 
logical reason, because the sage did not miss even the minutest thing, 
so how could he have missed the Himalayas? There can be only one 
reason, that when the sage composed his song the Himalayas had not 
yet come into existence, or even if they had, they must have been 
such small hills that they could have been overlooked. 

The Rigveda mentions journeys and places which are not in 
India, places which are in Central Asia. It talks about nights which 
occur only at the North Pole and never in this region. The Rigveda 
mentions a place which has daylight for six months and night for 
six months. But the Himalayas have not been mentioned! It seems 

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The Physical and Energy Bodies 

that the Himalayas were absent. And it appears that either the sage 
resided at the North Pole, or there was a straight pathway between 
the North Pole and India without the Himalayas in between, without 
any hindrance. 

Scholars who believe that the Aryans migrated to India have 
difficulty because they cannot find any mention of hardship in 
crossing the Himalayas. If they did migrate into India, it is 
impossible that they would not mention the terrible difficulties 
in crossing the Himalayas because so many other things are 
mentioned. It would have been the deepest memory of the race — 
so many people would have died, so many people would have been 
lost, possibly only ten out of a thousand would have arrived — but 
there is no mention of it. The Himalayas did not exist. It is not a 
very old mountain range. 

When I talk of a stone I do not mean a mountain, even a mountain 
has a vital body. Wherever there is growth, there is a vital body. All 
growth happens in prana, in the vital energy, not in matter. Growth 
always happens in prana, not in matter. So sometimes it happens 
that a large man seems to be quite lifeless, he has a heavy body but 
no vital energy. And sometimes a lean, thin body shows an oceanic 
vital energy. 

This energy body is created by prana and the physical body is 
created by matter, created by food. This energy is received from the 
sun, the air, and from infinite subtle vibrations. 

So sometimes it can also happen that a person can learn the art 
of being nourished directly from this prana, this energy. Then he 
can become free from eating food, or reduce the quantity of food 
he requires. This person can use this life-energy directly and can 
assimilate it. That art exists. Sometimes it happens accidentally... 

There are still a few people alive on earth today who have not 
eaten food for years. They have not lost any weight — and they should 
have. It appears that somehow their system understands the method 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

of changing energy directly into matter. And now, after Einstein, it is 
clear that matter and energy are not two things,- matter is just energy, 
energy is just matter - two states of one thing. 

Einstein’s greatest formula states only this, that energy and matter 
are not two things, they are one,- they are two states of one and the 
same thing. So matter can become energy and energy can become 
matter. The atom bomb was developed according to this formula. 
The explosion of the atom bomb is a declaration that matter converts 
into energy; one atom is split and it becomes energy. The opposite 
is also possible. The process is reversed when a person lives without 
food and the body is not in need of food: energy from the energy 
body converts into matter. 

This energy body is an inner layer,- we are not aware of it. Some¬ 
times, in some moments it is felt - occasionally. One day you are 
standing on the seashore and suddenly you find a wave of energy 
running within you. That wave is not happening in the physical body, 
it cannot,- that wave is an energy phenomenon. Energy waves don’t 
affect matter, they can’t affect stone: they are energy. When you 
fall in love suddenly vibrations, waves of energy arise in you. Those 
waves do not arise in your physical body, although the body feels the 
sensation, the thrill, the excitement. 

Housman, a great Western thinker has written: "1 call that 
poetry, poetry which makes your hair stand on end." The influence 
of poetry is not on the physical body, it is on the energy body. A 
real poet is one who enters into your energy body so that you can 
feel the waves inside. 

A song which does not make you dance is not really a song - your 
ears may have heard it but your energy body has not. But when a song 
does reach the energy body then it becomes a dance. Sometimes 
when hearing a song, when hearing the notes of a veena, or being 
with the waves of the ocean, in moments of love, looking at the moon 
in the sky, watching the rising sun, feeling a rush of wind, watching 


The Physical and Energy Bodies 

a flower blossoming, you vibrate blissfully. That is not your physical 
body, that is your energy body. 

Scientists now acknowledge the vital energy within,- they call it 
bioenergy. They call it the body electricity. Some people have more 
body electricity and some have less. This is the reason why some 
people have a hypnotic effect on you. You go to a person and without 
reason you suddenly feel his influence — it is because of the energy 
body. This person has developed the energy body, and it is possible 
only when the first body is transparent, otherwise not. 

If he has developed the energy body, you can immediately feel the 
waves within your energy body, one energy touching another energy. 
It can be touched from a faraway distance, the distance does not 
matter. For the physical body distance matters,- for the energy body 
it does not matter. Then something within you is moved, something 
vibrates, your energy body aligns with it, it becomes enveloped by it. 

The most significant part of the energy body which is visible in the 
physical body is the eyes. That is why nothing seems to be more alive 
in the body than the eyes,- the rest of the body appears to be dead. 
In fact the eyes are functioning in two ways. Eyes are those places in 
your physical body from where your energy body peeps out, hence 
the eyes are so alive and vibrating. That is why the energy waves 
immediately rush into the eyes. It takes time for anger to come into 
your hands: you will clench your fist, your blood will rush and then 
you will run to attack,- but the eyes show anger within moments. Love 
will take time to reach to the body, you will have to wait; but eyes fall 
in love at once. 

Your eyes are the language of your energy body. Everything about 
your energy body can be seen in your eyes if they are thoroughly 
examined. Your eyes are continuously broadcasting what is going on 
inside you. Eyes are very expressive, vibrant. 

This energy body also needs purification. This energy body needs 
transparency. All the exercises of pranayama, breathing exercises, are 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

to make the vital body transparent. The more oxygen that enters 
the physical body the cleaner and purer the vital body becomes,- the 
more carbon dioxide enters it, the more impure, polluted and gross 
the vital body becomes. 

That is why it is difficult to sleep during the day and it is easy 
at night, because during the night on earth the oxygen level is 
reduced and the carbon dioxide level is increased. During the day 
there is more oxygen and less carbon dioxide. Hence those who rise 
in brahmamuhurt, the early dawn, believe that it is natural to get up 
early, because if your energy body is not influenced by the rising sun 
you have made it very insensitive, dead. When the sun is rising even 
plants feel the influence, even birds begin to sing songs, but your 
energy body is unmoved. You just turn over onto the other side in 
your bed! You have become a stone. 

This energy body, since it is energy, is affected by energized 
air. So the deeper your breathing is, the healthier it will be. Your 
breathing should be natural. Don’t breathe superficially. The deeper 
your breathing, the stronger your energy will be,- the deeper your 
breathing, the sharper your intelligence will be. 

If women lag behind men in intelligence, one of the reasons is that 
many have a bad habit of breathing superficially. Among animals it is 
not so often seen that there is much of a difference between male and 
female intelligence - there seems to be no difference. But there is a 
vast difference to be seen amongst human beings. There are thousands 
of reasons for it, but one is the superficial breathing. The reason why 
women breathe superficially is that they are constantly self-conscious 
about their breasts. If you want large breasts, a superficial way of 
breathing is helpful. If there is deep breathing, breasts will remain 
small. In any case, big breasts are not needed. 

It is interesting that, except in human females, all female animals 
have large breasts only when they are required, when the babies need 
milk,- after that they become small. Only women have developed 


The Physical and Energy Bodies 

breasts which remain large even when no milk is needed. This is due 
to superficial breathing. If the breathing goes deep down into the 
belly the breasts will remain as the body requires them to be. If they 
are to be kept large, the belly has to be contracted and the breath 
should not be allowed to go down into the belly. 

The wrestler does not breathe down into the belly just so that 
his chest remains expanded. That is why most wrestlers are not 
intelligent - they can’t be. They can’t be! I have not yet heard of a 
single wrestler who is intelligent, because intelligence cannot grow if 
the energy body is dense. The wrestler also keeps his belly contracted 
and breathes up into his chest. 

Have you seen a baby breathing? The way a baby breathes is the 
right way to breathe. The baby’s belly rises and falls, not the chest, 
because the baby has not yet been spoiled. The baby neither needs 
to become a wrestler nor to have big breasts; he does not have such 
problems yet. The baby breathes as nature requires him to breathe. 
His belly rises and falls. 

You must have been surprised to see the statues of Buddha: Indian 
statues have large chests and small bellies, but Japanese and Chinese 
statues have small chests and big bellies. This looks a little ugly but 
there is a reason for it. Even though this was not factual - it is not true 
that Buddha had a big belly - but in China and Japan they made such 
statues knowingly because they say that the attention should be on 
the belly and not on the chest. If the attention remains on the chest, 
the breathing is within the chest. So one of the reasons why many 
women are less intelligent is that they breathe superficially, so that the 
energy body remains shrunken, not vitalized. 

The more vital air that is available to the energy body, the purer 
this body becomes. This energy body also uses other more subtle 
foods. Particular vibrations or waves are available at particular 
places: there are many kinds of vibrations - pure vibrations and 
impure vibrations. 

125 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

Satsang, the heart to heart communion with a master, is useful: 
you go to a sage and just sit near him without any conversation... 
just sitting there — for what? In this silence his vibrations become 
available to your energy body. 

A unique thing which has come into existence in India is darsban, 
"seeing." In the West nobody can understand what darsban might 
mean - "Going for darsban, to see someone?" It is conceivable that 
you might go to meet someone, to talk with him, to discuss with 
him, to understand something.. but going only to see him? What 
madness! What is this darsban? What will darsban do? Darsban does 
something, does a lot. Often something which cannot happen in 
conversation happens. 

Darsban only means that you go to a place where there is an energy 
body, very much alive with an atmosphere around it full of energy, 
and by sitting there even for only a few moments your energy body is 
moved, your vital body is vibrated. 

Seekers used to go away to the mountains, away from human 
civilization, to escape the vibrations which emanate from large 
numbers of people. Energy vibrations can be either pure or 
polluted. A crowd is very tiring. Have you ever noticed that when 
you return from being in a crowd your energy is a little reduced, 
your energy has gone down a bit? Have you ever noticed that 
the crowd reduces your intelligence? In fact, if you have to get 
something done which is very idiotic and you cannot get it done 
by a single person alone, then you can get it done by a crowd. If a 
mosque is to be set on fire or a temple is to be demolished, only a 
crowd can get it done, not individuals. 

It is surprising that if you asked a single individual in that crowd 
to do such a stupid thing he would not agree. What is the point in 
setting a mosque on fire? But when he is in the crowd his intelligence 
goes down and he thinks, "1 am not responsible for it," because in a 
crowd intelligence and responsibility are lost. He thinks, "1 will not 

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The Physical and Energy Bodies 

be held responsible for this. There are so many people doing it, and 
1 am just going with them." Everybody thinks that way. That is why 
crowds have committed greater crimes than individuals. Individuals 
only commit small crimes. 

When the seekers used to go far away from the crowd it was only 
to gain the pure vital energy, not the energy given by the crowd. 

Moses went to the mountains of Sinai, Mohammed climbed the 
mountains, Buddha and Mahavira roamed about in the forest, Christ 
remained unknown for thirty years. 

Christians have no record of his first thirty years. The whole story 
about Jesus covers only about three years, and that too the three 
years before his death. Where was he for the rest of the time? There 
is one mention of his seventh year, when he was only seven years old, 
and then again when he was thirty. Nobody knows about the other 
twenty-three years when he was away from the crowd. These twenty- 
three years were for the growth of his energy body, of his vital energy. 

We will talk about the third body during the night session. 

Now let us do some work. 

When I tell you to breathe deeply and fast, deep and fast breathing, 

I am trying to activate your energy body. Don’t be a miser, put your 
total energy into it. When I tell you to go mad and to throw everything 
out that is being suppressed inside, it is for your purification - throw 
it out! When I tell you to do the "Hoo, Hoo," it is in order to hit your 
energy body. 

Let us enter into the experiment. Spread out and stand far apart. 
Nothing less than madness will do. Put your intellect aside. Anyway 
you don’t have much intellect, so it shouldn’t be a problem! Nothing 
less than madness will do. 

127 I 

Chapter - 7 

The Mental Body and the Bodies of 
Awareness and Bliss 

When the soul, 

in collaboration with the two bodies, 

and through the medium of the fourteen instruments, 

conceives objects such as words, 

it is called manomay kosh, the mental body. 

When the soul, 

in collaboration with the three bodies, 

becomes conscious of all perceptions, 

it is called vigyanamay kosh, the awareness body. 

When the soul, 

in collaboration with the four bodies, 
remains in the innocence of its cause, 
like the seed of the banyan tree, 
it is called anandamay kosh, the bliss body. 

The first body is the gross body - physical, and made of food. 
The second is the energy body. We talked about these two in the 
morning. One who purifies the energy body awakens towards the 
third body,- when one layer becomes transparent, glimpses of the 
next layer start coming. 

As we have understood, the first body is made of food, the 
second body is made of vital energy, and the third is made of 

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The Mental Body and the Bodies of Awareness and Bliss 

thought waves. Thoughts are also food. Thoughts are also things. 
Thoughts are also energy. 

Buddha has said: "As you think so you become. You are the result 
of your own thinking." This is true up to the level of the mental body. 
Buddha’s statement is true because those people he was speaking 
to knew nothing beyond the mind. But we never regard thoughts as 
food - thoughts are also food, thoughts also enter within and create a 
body. Try to understand this. 

In 1900, in Calcutta, a boy child disappeared. After seven years 
he was tracked down in the jungle and was brought back by a hunter. 
He had been carried off by a wolf. Tremendous efforts were made to 
make the boy human, but it was very difficult. The boy walked on all 
fours just like a wolf and he made sounds like a wolf. He had become 
as ferocious as a wolf, he ran as fast as one, and it was difficult to try 
to get him to stand upright. The boy died because of these excessive 
attempts. His mind had not developed because the mind had not 
received food. 

This has happened three or four times. In Uttar Pradesh, some 
ten years ago, a boy of fourteen was brought back after having lived 
among wolves. But by the age of fourteen it was too late because 
he could not speak even a word. After six months he had only been 
taught to say "Ram." They had named the boy Ram,- after six months 
it had only been possible to teach him this much. He also died. He 
was a healthy boy but he could not be saved in spite of the best of 
efforts. Now it had become too difficult to develop his mind and 
to make him a human being because the mental body had not been 

You speak a particular language,- this is the food you have been 
given from childhood. If you had been in another family you would 
have spoken a different language. Language creates a deep layer. 

One of my friends left India in his childhood and spent twenty 
years in Germany. His mother tongue was Marathi, but he forgot 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

it. After speaking German for twenty years he had no memory of 
Marathi - he could not read it, he could not even speak it, let alone 
understand it. Then suddenly, due to an accident, he fell ill. His 
brother went to Germany from India. The hospital staff requested 
him to stay in the hospital with his sick brother even though it was 
against the hospital rules to stay overnight. But he had to stay, because 
whatever language the brother spoke in his unconscious state was 
unknown to the hospital staff. It was only when he was conscious that 
he would speak German. And his brother was amazed that when the 
sick brother was unconscious he spoke Marathi; when conscious he 
could not even understand Marathi, but while unconscious he spoke 
only Marathi and could not speak a single word of German. In the 
unconscious state he could not understand any German at all. 

The food which creates the very first layer of the mental body is 
the deepest. So one may later learn another language but it cannot 
have the depth of one’s mother tongue. It is impossible, there just is 
no way, because the first layer created in the mental body will always 
remain the first, all other layers will be created afterwards. 

Language, words, thoughts, all these create a body within us. The 
more cultured and well-educated someone is, the bigger this mental 
body is. But this body is not visible to us as a body,- hence we go on 
throwing all kinds of thoughts into the mental body without caring. 
A man reading his newspaper in the morning doesn’t understand that 
this newspaper is also creating his mental body. Walking along the 
street reading the posters on the walls, he cannot even conceive that 
these words are entering him and creating his mind. 

We are totally unaware how we are creating our minds, hence our 
life is a chaos. If we were as unaware in creating our physical bodies 
as we are about creating our minds, even the physical body would 
become a problem. We do not choose to eat gravel and pebbles, but 
as far as the mind is concerned what we eat is much worse than that. 
It all creates the mind, whatever enters into the mind knowingly or 

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The Mental Body and the Bodies of Awareness and Bliss 

unknowingly becomes a part of it. But we are not aware that our mental 
body is being created every moment; whatever we hear, whatever we 
read, whatever we think, whatever words resound within us create our 
mental body. If your neighbor tells you something meaningless you 
never say, "Please, don’t put all this garbage into me." Although you 
may or may not be aware just how easy it is to absorb it, nevertheless 
it is very difficult to throw it out. 

If 1 have put a word into you, it is not so easy to throw it out. Try 
it and you will know. I can say the word Ram to you, now however you 
try, you will not be able to get rid of it all night, instead it will go even 
deeper and settle inside because the more you try to get rid of it the 
more you will remember it. That which we want to forget first has to 
be remembered in order to forget it. And every time we remember it, 
we strengthen it. 

That’s why when you want to forget someone it becomes 
impossible. You may forget about someone, that is another thing, 
but it is very difficult to consciously forget someone, and even then 
that forgetting will just be superficial, it will not be erased from 
within. The mind doesn’t lose anything, it is a great collector. The 
mental body goes on collecting in very subtle ways. Whatever it 
has received as a thought wave, even in past lives, is collected. It is 
essential to understand this mental body — because only then can it 
be transcended. 

Remember two things. Firstly, I told you that the physical body is 
a gross body,- behind it exists the energy body, and behind that exists 
the mental body. The energy body is the bridge between the physical 
and the mental body. Prana, the breath, is the connecting link between 
the two. That is why when breathing stops the physical body is left 
here and the mental body starts on a new journey. In death only the 
physical body disintegrates, not the mental body. Only when a person 
is enlightened is the mental body dissolved. When a man dies only his 
physical body dies, not his mental body,- and that mental body starts 

I 131 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

on a new journey with all its old patterns. The mind searches for a 
new body and again finds a womb, and it receives the new body in the 
same way and creates almost the same old structure. 

The connecting link between the two is the vital breath. Hence 
when a man becomes unconscious, we don’t pronounce him dead - 
even if he remains in a coma for months we don’t say that he is dead. 
But if the breathing stops we immediately regard him as dead because 
the connection between the body and the mind is broken. 

And remember, with breathing the relationship between mind and 
the body changes every moment. When you are angry the rhythm of 
your breathing changes immediately,- when you have a sexual desire 
the rhythm of your breathing changes,- when you are relaxed the 
rhythm of your breathing changes. If your mind is disturbed, then 
too the rhythm of your breathing changes,- if your body is disturbed, 
then too the rhythm of your breathing changes. The rhythm of your 
breathing is changing continuously with changes in the body or mind. 
That is why those who can truly master the rhythm of breathing 
achieve a profound mastery over mind and body. 

In Japan, small babies are taught to relax their breathing 
whenever anger arises, because anger cannot be relaxed directly. 
You can suppress it but you cannot relax it, and the anger which 
is suppressed will again erupt some day, today or tomorrow, and 
perhaps with more venom in it. In Japan, children are told to relax 
their breathing if they feel angry, because when the breathing 
becomes relaxed the anger that has arisen in the mind does not 
reach to the physical body, without the bridge of the breathing 
that is impossible. And if it does not reach the physical body, then 
neither suppression nor expression is needed. If it remains in the 
mind it will slowly dissipate, if it reaches the physical body it is 
beyond your control. There are ways to dissipate it in the mind. 
But the physical body is a very gross thing. If it catches something, 
then it can only be either suppressed or expressed. If you express it 

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that creates a problem, if you suppress it then it creates complexes 
within the body. 

A great American psychologist named Wilhelm Reich died some 
time ago. After lifelong experiments on his patients, he found that 
when one attempts to suppress anger, the anger settles in the physical 
body in the form of knots. And strangely enough he discovered that 
he could make someone angry just by pressing those knots. After 
a lifelong study of patients’ bodies, if he felt that the disease they 
had was due to suppressed anger, he would press those parts in the 
body where he thought the anger might have accumulated and the 
person would become immediately enraged. Someone else might 
never become angry if these same places were pressed, but that 
particular patient would burn with anger for no reason; there was no 
provocation from outside, and no apparent reason. 

When you suppress feelings, knots are created in the physical 
body, complexes are formed. Ninety percent of diseases are the result 
of suppressed emotions. That’s why the physician can only change 
them, not cure them. Today there is one disease, and the physician 
represses it, controls it, but tomorrow it will start appearing in another 
form. The physician only transfers the disease somewhere else. The 
patient feels a little relieved. One disease is cured, another will take a 
little time to erupt. 

The complexes created within, the poisons accumulated inside 
which have become subtle knots, need to be thrown out. If they have 
not yet affected the physical body, there are ways in which they can 
be made to dissolve from the mind. 

Breathing is the bridge. Whatever is conveyed to the body is 
conveyed through breathing. If your mind is full of sexual desire and 
your breathing remains undisturbed, it is difficult for this desire to 
reach the physical body,- it is only through the breathing that it will 
reach the body. 

There was a great Russian film director, Stanislavski, one of the 

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most intelligent directors of the twentieth century. Stanislavski made 
some very profound discoveries about acting, and those discoveries 
are very useful, useful for everyone. His most profound discovery 
was the use of different rhythms of breathing, which he taught to his 
actors. He said: "If you have to be angry, don’t bother about trying to 
be angry, adopt a particular rhythm of breathing and anger will come 
on its own. If you have to express love, don’t try to express it, because 
that very effort makes it inauthentic and destroys the acting. Arrange 
the breathing within yourself and then breathe in that rhythm - the 
love you want will soon appear on your face. And this will appear to 
be quite close to reality, it will not look like acting." 

Stanislavski used to say that an actor must be the master of 
both his physical and energy bodies — he must especially be a 
master of his energy body, only then can he become an expert in 
acting, not otherwise. 

Nijinsky was a Russian dancer. When Nijinsky danced everyone 
felt that they were seeing an illusion - and that was partially the case. 
Although there were many great dancers of the same caliber, it is said 
there has never been and perhaps never will be a dancer like Nijinsky. 
The strange thing was that when he was dancing and he made a leap, 
it took him an unusually long time to come down. No other dancer 
took as long,- it was as if gravitation had less effect on him. When he 
made a leap, it looked as if he was just floating in the air and taking his 
own time to come back down. Others who had leaped with him had 
already touched the floor again, long before he did. 

What was the secret behind it? Investigations showed that there 
was a particular quality in the rhythm of his breathing that was quite 
different from that of others. It was uncommon. 

During the last fifty years, there have been reports of people 
levitating. For example, there is one woman in Bolivia who rises four 
to five feet above the ground some four or five times a year. She was 
investigated scientifically, filmed, a lot of work was done, and now 

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there is no doubt about it. It was discovered that the rhythm of her 
breathing was the same as Nijinsky’s. She breathed in the same way. 

Several rhythms of breathing have been discovered in the field 
of pranayatna, the science of the vital breath. When these dillerent 
rhythms are used changes occur in the mind and in the physical body. 
Breathing is the bridge between the mental body and the physical 
body: the physical body exists on this side and the mental body on 
the other side. 

Thoughts are the most subtle things in our experience, but 
even thoughts actually exist. The idea that thoughts have no 
material existence has now been proved wrong. They do have a 
material existence. 

Eddington has written in his autobiography: "Many times I am 
overwhelmed with the concept that thoughts are things." At that time 
it was just an idea, there was no proof, but now scientific evidence is 
available. In the last ten years machines have been developed which 
can pick up your thought waves. If you stand in front of such a machine 
and concentrate on a thought, it registers that you are concentrating 
- you only have to stand in front of the machine the same way in 
which you stand in front of an X-ray machine. If you relax and let go 
of the thought, the machine indicates that you have relaxed. 

There is a man in America called Ted Serios. Perhaps in today’s 
world his is the greatest evidence on earth proving that thoughts are 
matter. A peculiar power suddenly appeared in Ted Serios. He would 
concentrate on some thought, and the image of that thought would 
appear in his eyes and this image could be photographed by a camera. 
For example, if he was peacefully concentrating on a thought of the 
Taj Mahal its image would appear in his eyes, and even though he 
has never actually seen the Taj Mahal and it would emerge only in 
his imagination, it could be photographed. Ted was photographed 
at least ten thousand times. Often very interesting observations 
were made, and the photographs have been published. Hundreds of 

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researchers worked hard using various approaches trying to detect 
any deception. But that was actually impossible, because while the 
researcher could see the Taj Mahal in his eyes and although he may 
have been deceived, it is very difficult to deceive a camera/What 
did the picture in the camera prove? It proved that if a thought can 
become dense and take on the form of the Taj Mahal in the eyes, 
then it is not only thought, it is a thing too,- it is matter, it is material, 
because only matter can be photographed, a thought cannot. Only 
matter can be photographed. A thing which can be photographed is 
more substantial, more material. 

Often really amazing things happened. Once, when Ted Serios 
was trying to bring the Taj Mahal into his eyes, he closed his eyes and 
confirmed that he had caught the image and asked for the camera to 
be kept ready. Then he opened his eyes, the camera clicked, and Ted 
said, "Sorry, I missed it. Now I caught the Hilton Hotel - the thought 
changed inside. Sorry, forgive me." Astonishingly enough the camera 
did not catch the photograph of the Taj Mahal, instead it caught one 
of the Hilton Hotel. It happened a few times that the Hilton Hotel 
was superimposed on the Taj Mahal, both were caught - the Taj Mahal 
going out, and the Hilton Hotel coming in. 

Thoughts are also substantial, although very subtle. And we are 
eating them too, we are taking them in every moment. These 
thoughts are creating a body within us. It is a house built of the bricks 
of thoughts. Hence the type of thoughts you take in create the type 
of mental body you will have. 

Man is very vulnerable in this way. At least in this century he 
has become very vulnerable. Radio is putting ideas in your head, 
newspapers, politicians, advertisers are all putting ideas into you,- man 
is being fed with thoughts from everywhere. And you still think that 
you are making your own decisions? - you are mistaken. 

Vance Packard has written a book entitled The Hidden Persuaders. 
When you go to a shop and ask for Berkeley cigarettes - do you think 

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the choice is yours? You are mistaken. There are hidden persuaders all 
around you, telling you through newspapers, through signs on shops, 
on walls, television, radio — wherever you look — telling you to Buy 
Berkeley cigarettes." "Berkeley" has been implanted in your mind. 

American advertisers say: "Whatever anyone buys, we have created 
ninety percent of his decision to buy. The remaining ten percent is 
not his choice either, it is only because of the incompletely developed 
art of advertising. The individual has no freedom in it. As we develop 
it to one hundred percent, we will know in advance what we will make 
him purchase, we will know what he will purchase. 

It is necessary to be aware of this, otherwise you are not free. If 
others are creating your mind you are not free. Your parents pass on 
their religion to you,- your teachers give you knowledge in schools,- 
advertisers, newspapers and the marketing net give you suggestions 
to buy things. You are being manipulated by these suggestions all 
your life. 

Now, in America, while the production of cars has increased, the 
demand has decreased because almost everyone already has a car. 
The manufacturers were worried what to do. So for the past five years 
a new idea has been promoted: that you are rich if you own two cars. 
Now people are starting to own two cars. Owning one car shows a 
man’s poverty, having only one car proves that you are poor. And 
once you have connected owning only one car with poverty, then life 
is hell without two. A rich man must have two houses - one in the 
city and another at the beach or in the mountains — only a poor man 
owns one house. Just plant an idea and people go crazy for it — and 
they always believe that it is they who are deciding. They are living 
in an illusion. 

The mental body is a creation of words. You all know much about 
the chanting of God’s name, and you must have seen others doing it, 
but are you aware that it is simply a protective measure and nothing 
else? Chanting is a safety device. If you are engaged in chanting 

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while you are walking on the road no other words will enter into you, 
because some space is needed in order for words to be able to enter. 

If someone is chanting "Rama, Rama" twenty-four hours a day, 
whether engaged in sweeping or eating or at a shop or talking to 
some-one else, always chanting "Rama, Rama" to himself, this is a 
protective measure; now you cannot force anything onto him. Now 
a thick layer, a wall of Rama has been erected within, and it is not 
easy to penetrate this wall of Rama. Such a person is trying to give a 
particular form and characteristics to his mental body. 

And it is very interesting that if anything is to penetrate this wall 
of Rama, it can only penetrate if it is in accord with the concept of 
Rama, not otherwise. An affinity with Rama is required in order for 
it to penetrate. For example, if someone shouts "Ravana" near this 
person, the word will bounce back off the wall, but if someone says 
Sita it will penetrate. This layer is then a protection against the 
undesirable and is open to the desirable. In a sense, this man will start 
becoming master of his mental body; he is allowing those thoughts 
which he wants and rejecting those which he does not want. 

And if we are not even masters of our own minds, what are we 
masters of? Our minds are almost mad because we simultaneously 
accept quite contradictory things — thousands of contradictory things. 
People complain how their mind is restless, perplexed, confused. It is 
amazing that they think that this is a disease to be cured. No, this is 
your own creation, you are practicing it twenty-four hours a day,- you 
are taking in all kinds of contradictory things. You take in one thought, 
then you grasp another quite contradictory thought. This creates 
uneasiness. There is a polarization between these two thoughts,- they 
fight and struggle with each other and you have to suffer. 

It is not you that is struggling, but the thoughts within you. There 
are infinite thoughts within you, and they are all conflicting. Some 
thoughts want to move eastward, some want to go westward, some 
don t want to move at all, and all of them are in tremendous conflict, 

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as if you have yoked the oxen of your cart in all four directions 
simultaneously. Such is your condition. Sometimes the cart moves 
a little eastward, sometimes westward. Sometimes the oxen in one 
direction are stronger, sometimes the oxen of some other direction are 
lethargic — but the struggle continues and the cart reaches nowhere. 
Ultimately it will shatter and will get you nowhere. We are all in this 
same predicament. There is an inner confusion, an inner conflict. 

A man came to me and said, "I want contentment in my life, 1 want 
satisfaction in my life, but I cannot trust anybody so 1 have come to 
you - even though I have no faith in you at all, please tell me the way 
to find contentment." 

I told him, "I will tell you the way, but you will not trust the method. 
Drop this search for contentment, because in fact you are searching 
for discontentment. A person who does not trust anybody cannot 
experience contentment" — because whoever does not trust has to 
be alert,- he is always afraid, always in danger. Because he distrusts 
everyone around him he has no trust at all. II this man s distrust 
grows stronger he will not be able to stay in his house because, who 
knows? - the house may collapse any time. And he will not be able to 
stay outside either because some accident may happen. If his distrust 
continues to grow, eventually he will end up distrusting himself also. 

Once I knew a university professor who was in fact a very 
intelligent man. Ultimately he reached a state where he could not 
trust even himself. He never kept a knife or a fork in his room during 
the night because he might at any time cut himself. He had no faith, 
no trust in himself. This meant that someone had to stay with him in 
his room at night - but he could not trust them either. Or someone 
had to stay just outside, but then nothing dangerous could be left 
inside the room because he had no trust in himself. 

In fact, for someone who has no trust in others, a day comes when 
he also loses trust in himself. The fact is that he cannot trust at all; 
the main question is of trust,- it is not a question of trusting others or 

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himself. Then contentment is impossible. Contentment comes to the 
one who keeps his trust alive in spite of the contrary condition, in 
spite of the no-trust situation. 

A boy is walking along with his father, holding the father’s hand,- 
he is totally relaxed, in trust. However, there is no certainty that the 
father might not push him down, it is not certain that the father himself 
will not fall down, and it is also possible that the father is holding the 
hand of the son for his own support. But the boy is satisfied. 

I have heard: 

Mulla Nasruddin asked his son to climb up a ladder. The boy was 
about ten years old. Mulla stood at the bottom of the ladder spreading 
his arms out, and told his son to jump down. 

The boy hesitated: "What if I fall down?" 

Nasruddin said, "You fool! Your father is here to catch you in his 
arms, so why should you fall?" 

"1 am afraid," said the son. 

Nasruddin told him, "Why be afraid when I am standing here?" 

The son hesitated, but the father persuaded him and the boy 
jumped. Nasruddin moved away. The son fell down and hurt his knees. 

He asked his father, "Why did you do that?" 

Nasruddin said, "I have given you a lesson about life: don’t trust 
even your father. This world is not to be trusted,- only deceitful 
persons live in this world and no one else." 

Contentment is not possible with such a mentality. Contentment 
is possible only in a certain state of mind, and that state is an attitude 
full of trust. Discontentment is an attitude of doubt. If you want both, 
then trouble arises. 

A friend came and said, "I am deeply afraid of death, and 1 have no 
trust in the existence of the soul." 

I said, "If the soul doesn’t exist, then why fear death? Then you 
are already dead,- what is left to die? And if you have trust that the 
soul does exist, then there is no need to fear because it will not die. 

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Choose one of the two. If you are certain that the soul does not exist, 
then the fear of death is total madness - how can something die 
which does not exist? Then you are only an assemblage and you will 
just disintegrate. Who will feel the pain of disintegration? - no one. 
Who is there to feel pain when a watch is disassembled? - no one. It 
was just an assemblage which is now disassembled. No one is left to 
feel the pain. Make sure that the soul does not exist, and then you 
have no reason to fear death." 

He asked, "And what if the soul does exist?" 

If! If the soul exists! - that is meaningless. It only means that you 
wish to sustain your fear of death. 

If the soul exists! He wants the fear of death to remain. If a denial 
of the soul dispels the fear, then he is willing even to accept the 
existence of the soul - but then again what to do with the fear? I said, 
"If the soul does exist, then there is no need to fear because then the 
existence of the soul means that death does not exist. " 

But what is his problem? His problem is that deep down he 
wants to survive and to live eternally, but that he also has no faith 
that eternal life is possible. He contradicts himself. Such a person 
goes on contradicting himself. Mind becomes a mess because we 
collect all these contradictory thoughts. If the mental body is to be 
purified there is only one way, and that is that thoughts should have a 
coordination, a rhythm, a harmony. Then the mental body is purified 
and one enters within. 

The fourth body is vigyammay kosh, the awareness body. The third 
is created by thoughts, the fourth is created by consciousness, by 
awareness,- that is the awareness body. When we become able to 
watch our thoughts the way we watch white clouds floating in the sky, 
or a line of cranes flying, when we are able to watch our thoughts from 
a distance, to see them flying in the sky of consciousness - then we 
are able to know the fourth body. 

But we are so strongly attached to the first body that even the 

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second body is not known. And then we are so captured by the 
third body, so thoroughly drowned in the mind, that we can’t even 
conceive of transcending it. 

Bodhidharma went to China about fourteen hundred years ago. 

Wu, the emperor of China, asked him, "My mind is very restless. Is 
there some way to find release from it?" 

Bodhidharma said, "You say your mind is not quiet, but have you 
ever known a quiet mind?" 

Wu was surprised. He said, "No, I have never known a quiet mind." 

Bodhidharma said, "Then why do you say ‘restless mind’? In truth, 
mind is restlessness. Restless mind’ — why do you use two words? 
Restlessness is mind, and you want to quiet the mind? You will go 
mad, but the mind itself can never be quiet." 

Wu said, "Does that mean that I will die with this restlessness?" 

Bodhidharma said, "No, you can go beyond this mind, and beyond 
this mind there is peace. You cannot pacify the mind, but if you go 
beyond the mind then what exists is peace,- and if that is achieved, 
then the mind becomes quiet." 

In fact "mind" as such disappears. As soon as the fourth body 
grows, the third begins withering away. And as soon as the fourth 
body has grown, the third, the mental body, remains as a thing of 
utility only. 

The one who has developed his fourth body is not surrounded by 
thoughts,- when it is needed he uses the thought process — just like 
with our feet: when we need them we use them. You don’t say, "I will ^ 
go on walking, moving my feet even while I am sitting in a chair." 
Although some people even do that. Some people do it because if 
they don’t keep moving their feet while they are sitting down, then 
how are they going to walk? - they have to continue practicing! Or 
is it that they are not aware of it? Mostly the chances are that they 
are not aware that their feet are moving. When the master is absent, 
who is going to be aware? If the feet wish to move, they move,- if 

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the head wishes to wander, it wanders. Whichever part wishes to do 
something, it does it of its own accord; all are slaves with no one as 
a master. And no one part is ready to obey, to listen to anyone else. 

With the experience of the fourth body, thoughts only have a 
utilitarian function — when you need to think you think, when it is not 
needed you don’t. If you are thinking when you don t need to, it will 
be difficult to experience the fourth body. It will be difficult because 
your thinking will continue, it will not obey your command to stop. 

There is a reason. Have you ever noticed that thoughts don t 
stop, they don’t cease in spite of your best efforts? But you are 
not aware that even your desire to stop your thoughts is a thought; 
otherwise they would stop immediately. One thought cannot 
stop another, they both have the same strength. Rather, when 
one thought tries to stop another, the other will assert itself more 
forcefully: "Who are you to stop me?” If one slave asks another to 
stop, the other will say, "I want to run. Who are you to stop me? 

I am the master." Your very effort to stop the thought is merely a 
thought. One thought cannot stop another. 

In fact it only works when the command comes from a higher 
level, not otherwise. When the command to stop thinking comes 
from the vigyanamay kosh, the awareness body, then no thought 
will dare to move an inch, it stops there and then. But the order 
must come from a higher level, it will not work if it comes from 
the same level. 

This is the fourth body - you will become aware of it only if you 
allow its growth. Then it will not be difficult to stop your thoughts. It 
is as if the master has come back and the servants immediately bow 
down to his feet, line up and wait for the master’s order. Just a little 
while before they were claiming to be the master, but with the return 
of the master, they are standing with their hands folded waiting for 
his orders. 

As soon as the awareness body has properly grown, thoughts wait 

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like slaves - doing their work when called for, otherwise ignored. 
They lie stored in the memory, and do not drive you crazy twenty- 
four hours of the day so that by the evening you are begging them, 
"Please forgive me. Stop now, allow me to sleep a little." But they 
don t listen to you at all. Right now yo« are not present, so who are 
they to listen to? You will begin to be present when you start to have 
glimpses of the awareness body. 

If you want to transcend the mind, don’t try to stop it. You cannot 
stop it, but you can make it harmonious, you can make it rhythmic. 
The mind itself is confused,- but it is in your hands, you can make it 
healthy. And as soon as the mind becomes healthy you will begin to 
see the layer behind it - or you can attempt to create the fourth layer. 
So don t ask the mind to stop. Do something which causes the mind 
to stop. 

Meditation is the way to awaken the fourth body because meditation 
increases consciousness, meditation increases understanding, 
meditation increases awareness. So meditation is a way to increase, to 
develop this fourth body. 

I told you: the fourth body is awareness,- meditation is its 
nourishment. Thoughts are food for the third body, and meditation is 
the food of the fourth body. Meditation too is an energy, meditation 
too is a force,- it is a force like other forces, but very subtle. You can 
understand it by doing a small experiment. Feel your pulse sometime, 
check its speed. Then close your eyes and meditate over your pulse 
for five minutes. Just be aware - and check it again. You will find a 
change in the pulse beat, it is not the same as it was before. What has 
meditating done? The energy of meditation flows towards the pulse 
beat and speeds it up. Meditation is an energy. 

A man is walking.. follow him, focus your awareness on his neck, 
stare at the back of his neck,- don’t do anything else, just concentrate. 
Within seconds you will find that he is feeling uneasy. There is a 
ninety percent chance that within two minutes he will look back to 

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The Mental Body and the Bodies of Awareness and Bliss 

see what is the matter. You did nothing, but only with awareness, only 
with meditation, a very subtle energy came out of your body and 
touched him. 

Meditation is the subtlest energy. In Russia, they are interested 
in meditation because they will have to take it into consideration as 
their space travel expands — for scientific reasons, because machines 
are unreliable. 

Recently some astronauts died because of some mechanical 
failures. If radio communication breaks down, then the astronauts can 
neither communicate with us nor can we give them any news. And 
if their spacecraft is lost in outer space we will never know where it 
has gone, whether they are alive or not. We will not be able to say 
anything about them. 

An American insurance company has advertised insurance for 
space travelers, with the condition that the payment will be made 
only upon certain proof of death. Otherwise they could be lost, but 
alive. Payment will be made only on certain proof of death. But if a 
space-ship is lost and their radio signals are out of order, there will not 
be any news as to whether they are dead or alive. 

Russia is working hard on the possibilities of meditation so that 
machines can be supported by an alternative measure — and to a 
certain extent these attempts have been successful. The idea is that 
one astronaut should be a meditator, so that he can communicate via 
the energy of meditation if radio signals go out of order. And they 
have been largely successful - communication is possible through the 
energy of meditation. And the surprising fact is that whenever this 
type of communication is possible it is one hundred percent reliable, 
without any errors,- and if it is not possible, it is not possible at all. 

Meditation is also an energy, possibly the subtlest energy. Even 
physicists feel that meditation must be a form of energy. Not 
only physiologists and psychologists but even physicists feel that 
meditation is an energy, because it is slowly becoming clear that if 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

we look at something meditatively the object is transformed; just by 
observing the object it becomes transformed. 

If we observe an atom, the atom does not behave the same way as 
it does when it is not observed; our observation changes its behavior. 
For instance, if a man is walking alone on the street he walks in a 
particular way, and if suddenly someone else comes along the street, 
then his gait changes immediately. The change may be subtle but it 
is there. 

You are taking a bath in your bathroom and if suddenly you find 
someone peeping through the keyhole, your behavior changes. 
What has happened? This change in the behavior of human beings 
is understandable, but scientists say that change even takes place in 
objects,- even objects move differently. 

Experiments with meditation have been done on flowers in the 
de la Barr laboratory of Oxford. Someone lovingly meditates on one 
flower, while another flower of the same kind is left unattended. No 
one meditates on the second flower,- although the flower is watered, 
the sun shines on it, every other arrangement is the same, but because 
of meditation the first flower grows and blooms much more and the 
second flower remains a dwarf. Seeds sown meditatively sprout faster 
than seeds sown without meditation. What has made the difference 
to the seeds? Is the flower influenced by the energy of meditation? 
There is no obvious connection, but there is definitely some energy 
working at some level. 

Meditation is the food for the fourth body. The meditation we are 
doing is an attempt to awaken the fourth body. Beyond these four 
bodies exists the fifth body, which the sages call the bliss body. When 
one reaches to the awareness body and purifies it with meditation, 
then the most transparent body emerges. 

The physical body can never be transparent because the very 
matter it is made of is so gross; howsoever you purify it, by its very 
nature it cannot become totally transparent. Pram energy is more 

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The Mental Body and the Bodies of Awareness and Bliss 

transparent, but not totally. The mental body can be made more 
transparent than the energy body, but still not totally. The most 
transparent is the awareness body - completely transparent. It is so 
transparent that you can not only see through it, you can even walk 
through it. It is so transparent that it has no resistance. 

Meditation is the purest energy, the most purified energy possible. 
If you pass through it you will not even feel it - no resistance, no 
obstruction. If you are in the purest energy of awareness, then you 
will not even know the fourth body. And it is interesting that as soon 
as you enter the awareness body you don’t feel this body, you feel the 
bliss body. 

Try to understand this. The fourth body is so pure that it is not 
visible separately as the fourth. It is like the clearest glass, which 
seems to be invisible. If it is visible, that means there is still some 
impurity,- if it is pure, only then is it totally invisible. But even glass is 
matter; it may not be visible, creating no obstruction for the eyes, but 
if you walk through it you will collide with it. 

But awareness is the purest energy ever known, ever recognized. 
The subtlest energy available through yoga, through meditation 
is awareness, consciousness. So when you awaken totally you are 
not aware of this awakening, you become aware of being blissful; 
beyond the awareness body is the bliss body — only the bliss body is 
experienced. The fifth is the bliss body. And the sages have also called 
it a body; this is not the self, this is also a body. The sages say bliss is 
also a body. 

Try to understand a few things about this. Firstly, as I told you, 
the fourth is the purest body, but it can also be impure,- though it 
is the purest, it can become impure. In us it is impure, it is totally 
impure. It is purified through meditation, it becomes impure due 
to unawareness,- it becomes pure by being conscious, it becomes 
impure due to unconsciousness. So all intoxicants basically harm the 
awareness body. They may harm the other bodies too, but that is 

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another thing. It is also possible that intoxicants may be beneficial 
for the other bodies, but they are harmful for the awareness body. 
Alcohol may sometimes prove beneficial for the physical body, to 
some extent. And it can also happen that alcohol can strongly activate 
your vital energy. So often the joy and strength you feel after drinking 
alcohol belongs to your vital energy. 

Alcohol can be beneficial to the thinking process too in some i 
ways. It appears to be a help to people who live in thoughts - poets, 
writers, painters, sculptors — people who live by imagination, giving » 
form to their thoughts, here it may be beneficial to some extent. But it 
certainly harms the fourth body and is never beneficial for it, because 
unconsciousness is the impurity, and consciousness is the purity for 
the fourth body. Every kind of unconsciousness is harmful to it. The 
fourth body can be the purest of all, but it can become impure as well; 
both possibilities exist. 

The special thing about the fifth body is that it is the purest. It 
cannot become impure. That is why there is no word as an opposite to 
bliss. Joy is opposite to sorrow, peace is opposite to disturbance, love 
is opposite to hate, consciousness is opposite to unconsciousness,- but 
bliss has no opposite. Bliss is the only word which has no opposite. 

If someone were to say "no-bliss," that would only be the absence of f 
bliss, it is not the opposite of bliss. "No-bliss" has no form, no place, 
no existence. 

There is no energy opposite to bliss,- hence, the fifth body is pure. 

So nothing needs to be done with the fifth body. When the fourth is 
purified, the fifth is available. The fifth is always present. And that is 
why everyone feels that bliss is his birthright, that you must have bliss > 
— that s why you seek it. Nobody asks why one seeks bliss: "What 
need is there for bliss? What is the purpose of it?" Every search can be 
questioned with, "What’s the point?" The search for bliss is the only * 
thing which cannot be questioned. Questioning seems meaningless. 

People come and ask me, "Why should we seek God? Why seek 

I 148 | 

The Mental Body and the Bodies of Awareness and Bliss 

the truth? What is the aim of life?" But nobody comes and asks 
me, "Why should 1 seek bliss? What is the aim of bliss?" Bliss is 
taken for granted. Even the search for the divine is ultimately the 
search for bliss: there is no other purpose. The search for truth is 
ultimately the search for bliss. If you knew for certain that there 
was no bliss after attaining the truth you would sink in sorrow, you 
would stop your search at once. You would have nothing to do with 
such a futile search. 

Nietzsche raised a question. He often raised profound questions 
which even a buddha would have had trouble in answering. 
Nietzsche asked: "If bliss is the goal of life, and if you are feeling 
happiness while lying, in being untrue, then what is bad about it? If 
bliss is the aim of life, and if you are finding it in your dreams, then 
why seek any further for truth or reality? If bliss is the aim of life, 
then put God aside. If bliss is attained through illusions, then what 
is there to worry about? There is just one decision to make: whether 
or not bliss is the aim of life." 

Moralists and theologians are at a loss to give an answer to 
Nietzsche’s question. And Nietzsche asked: "Can you be sure that 
the truth will not bring sorrow? How can you be sure that truth will not 
bring sorrow?" "Because," Nietzsche says, "our experience says that 
the truth is very bitter and that it creates a lot of trouble. Have you 
totally decided that delusion will always bring trouble and suffering? 
Our daily experience is that delusion is very pleasant! Why are you 
trying to destroy people’s dreams? - because these dreams can also 
be beautiful and pleasant. Of course there are nightmares, but you 
can always get rid of nightmares and make your joyful dreams eternal, 
never to be broken. Then what would be the need for any search?" 

This creates problems for theologians — theologians, not the 
man of wisdom. The man of wisdom says: "Dreams are things which 
can never be made eternal. Where there are pleasures they will be 
followed by sorrow, they are interlinked. If you sometimes get joy 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

from the false, it is because the false gives you the illusion of being 
the reality. If you sometimes get glimpses of happiness from the false, 
it is because the false claims to be true. That is the reason why no liar 
admits to being a liar, he will always claim to be truthful. In fact only a 
liar claims to be truthful, while truth needs no claim." Lies have to use 
the mask of truth. If dreams are to survive, then they have to create 
the illusion of being the reality and claim that they are not dreams. 

Bliss is not joy, because joy is essentially connected with sorrow. 
Bliss is not a dream, because dreams are bound to be disturbed. And 
that which can be disturbed is not bliss, because there is no opposite 
to bliss which could disturb the bliss. Bliss is non-dual and alone. 
Hence, the search for bliss exists because it is our ultimate body - but 
it is still a body. 

The search of the sages is so subtle that it has no comparison. 
They even call bliss a body. Why? They say: "Until you know bliss, 
you have not attained that which is worth attaining; and as long as you 
are conscious of your knowing, the duality continues to be present - 
the knower is still separate from the known." 

You say, "I am blissful." Now two things are obvious: the one who 
feels, and the object of feeling itself. So this bliss is also a sheath 
around you and you are standing at the center, aware of this bliss. As 
soon as this awakening comes — and this awakening is more subtle and 
difficult than the first awakening... 1 have told you that meditation 
is the food for the awareness body ; freedom from the mind comes 
through awareness. If someone becomes aware of the bliss body, he 
also transcends bliss and attains that which he is. Then he is not the 
body, he is the self. 

But awakening from the mind - although very difficult - is still easy 
in comparison to awakening from bliss. There is an intrinsic difficulty 
in awakening from bliss, because we do not desire to awaken from it. 
Who wants to awaken from bliss? Bliss was our whole life’s aspiration 
- for several lives. Who will wish to part with bliss? One may want to 


The Mental Body and the Bodies of Awareness and Bliss 

drop their fetters, their iron chains, but no one wants to drop golden 
chains. And bliss does not appear to be a chain, it appears to be an 
ornament set with precious stones. But the sages say that even this 
is a chain. And remember that the iron chain is not as strong as the 
golden chain set with precious stones, because the prisoner himself 
does not want to drop this golden chain. It is this that makes the 
golden chain stronger. 

The bliss body is the last thing. Hence when people asked Buddha, 
"What will happen in nirvana? Will there at least be bliss in nirvana?" 
Buddha answered, "You will not be there, so how could bliss be there? 
Neither you nor bliss will be there." 

This is very interesting, that a duality is needed in order to feel bliss, 
that there needs to be someone inside to experience the bliss. Every 
experience is outside - every experience,- the one who experiences 
is within. But can we then talk about "an experiencer" when there 
is an absence of the experience? When there is no experience, then 
how can you call someone an experiencer? So Buddha says, "Both 
disappear — something remains, but not you ; something remains, but 
not bliss." 

If the bliss body remains, then one is reborn in bliss - but one is 
born again, life does not end. One is reborn blissfully. Life is a dance, 
life is bliss - but life is there. Nirvana comes with the annihilation of 
the bliss body. 

How to awaken from bliss? Right now we do not know bliss, and 
it is difficult to understand the renunciation of that which we do not 
know. How do we let go of that which we do not have? It is like 
asking a beggar to renounce a throne. The beggar will ask, "Where is 
the throne that I have to renounce? We can talk about renunciation 
later, first tell me where the throne is. First I want to enjoy it, I want 
to sit on it." 

But to talk about discarding this bliss right from the beginning 
is useful in a way. If you are aware even before attaining the throne 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

that it will have to be renounced, then the throne will not have a 
hypnotizing charm. After all, it will have to be renounced. 

Bayazid was a Sufi mystic. He used to tell his disciples, "Always 
remember this mantra: that you have to renounce every experience, 
whatever it may be." 

Hassan, a disciple of Bayazid, asked him, "Even if it is the 
experience of God?" 

Bayazid answered, "Remember, even that has to be renounced. 
You have to go on renouncing everything until nothing remains, don’t 
stop until nothing is left, because 1 can say to you that where nothing 
is left, there godliness is. Before that, God must be your own creation. 
Go on renouncing everything." 

The world exists as long as there are experiences. Every experience, 
even the subtlest experience, belongs to the world. The experience of 
bliss is also a part of the world. 

The sage makes very wonderful statements. It is amazing to 
realize that such courageous people have lived in this world. These 
courageous people were describing such revolutionary experiences - 
and a strange thing happened: the non-revolutionary people gathered 
around them! It is strange, because it appears that they have not even 

The sage says: 

When the soul, 

in collaboration with the four bodies, 

remains in the innocence of its cause, 

like the seed of the banyan tree... 

That innocence of any inherent cause is called the bliss body. This 
has been called the basic innocence. The banyan tree is hidden in the 
seed, and until the seed is broken the tree will not be born. Similarly, 
the layer closest to the self, the deepest and the first, is the bliss 

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The Mental Body and the Bodies of Awareness and Bliss 

body. But they are amazing, the people who say "...remains in the 
innocence of its cause" - and that innocence is called the bliss body. 

This bliss body is the shell of the self, like the shell of a seed. And 
until that bliss is transcended, the soul, the self is not attained; until 
the seed is broken, there can be no tree. Those who think that the 
wise men of India are seeking bliss are mistaken. Wise men in India are 
seeking that state where bliss too has been discarded as a worthless 
thing, is not needed anymore. As long as bliss is needed, as long as 
there is a desire for bliss, as long as bliss interests you, your poverty 
continues. You are the emperor only when you renounce bliss the way 
a seed renounces its shell. 

These are the five bodies. To attain to the fifth is transcendence, 
because as soon as you attain to the fifth you are standing so close to 
the existence that you are pulled in. Then nothing is to be done. It is 
like when a flower is floating near a whirlpool: slowly, slowly it comes 
closer to it, and as it touches the first layer or the circumference of 
the whirlpool it is pulled into the pool, it sinks deep and is drowned. 

Human effort is needed to attain up to the fifth body, but no effort 
is required to go beyond that. Hence if the one who is making his 
effort to reach to the fifth body remembers that it is the grace, the 
benevolence, the kindness and the compassion of existence which 
will pull him in from that point onwards, from the fifth body onwards, 
this person will be helped by grace. But if in his effort to attain to the 
fifth someone starts thinking that he can do it by himself, then from 
the start it will already be difficult to even reach it. And even if he 
does reach to the fifth, in his vanity he may stand there thinking, "If 
I have done so much, then I can also go beyond the fifth. If I can get 
this far, what do I need the grace of existence, of the divine?" Then it 
is possible that he may be standing just on the threshold and yet the 
gravitational force may not touch him, may not work on him, because 
his receptivity is essential for it to work - he must be ready to be 
pulled in ; only then does it function. 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

Hence we do not call it gravitation, we call it grace. There is a 
reason for this. Gravitation is quite mechanical, attraction is quite 
mechanical. A magnet does not have to ready itself before a bigger 
magnet will pull it. No readiness is needed on the part of the small 
magnet. A stone may not wish to be pulled down, but if you drop it 
the earth will pull it down. 

Hence we have called this force grace,- it is not mechanical. 

A preparation is needed to receive this grace; one’s hands should 
be open, held out to receive,- only then this grace can happen. 

This realization of grace is the key to transcending the fifth body, 
to enter the bodiless self. 

Enough for today. 

Now we should try to reach to the fifth. Remember the grace of 
the divine. It is possible that you may fall within the gravitational field 
and be pulled in. 

Those who want to participate vigorously may come up on the 
raised area and those who go slowly should stand off to the sides. No 
lazy ones should remain on the raised area. If you want to go slow, 
even slightly, then stand off to the sides. 

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Going beyond the Senses 

According to one's inclination towards pleasure or pain, when one 

focuses on the pleasant 

it is the happiness-oriented mind, 

and when one focuses on the unpleasant 

it is the misery-oriented mind. 

The doer is that which arises from the actions 
of the embodied soul in its efforts 
to achieve happiness and to avoid misery. 

The senses - sound, touch, sight, taste, smell - 
are the causes of both happiness and misery 

When the soul is identified with its karmically acquired body, this is a 
diseased embodied soul. 

In order to reach your innermost emptiness that is enclosed by the 
five bodies, your being that is bound by these layers of bodies, it is 
essential to understand the nature of happiness and of misery which 
cause this bondage. 

The body does not bind you, it cannot. It is your idea that the 
body can give you happiness that binds you. If you have the idea that 
a prison can deliver happiness, you become bound even to the prison. 

Here it is necessary to understand that it is not the same as when 
someone else locks you up in a prison,- this prison we are talking about 
is of your own choosing and no one else is responsible for putting 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

you there. So to become free from this bondage is very difficult but 
also very easy. It is difficult because you yourself have created this 
bondage and therefore you must be enjoying it, otherwise there 
would be no reason for you to stay this way. If someone else had tied 
you up, you would not be enjoying it. But you have bound yourself, 
hence the difficulty. It is also easy to break free from this bondage 
because you put these chains on yourself, so whenever you choose 
they can also be broken. If someone else had bound you, just wanting 
to be free would not have been enough, a struggle would have been 
needed to break the chains, strength would have been the deciding 
factor. And if the other had been stronger than you, your freedom 
would not have been certain. 

If we have chained ourselves, then we must be enjoying it in some 
way,- it cannot be altogether painful. Maybe this happiness is only 
an illusion, maybe it only appears to exist - yet still it is. Maybe it is 
dreamlike — maybe it is like a mirage, where there is no water, it only 
appears to be there. When you are thirsty, even something that just 
appears to be water is enough. A thirsty man cannot afford the luxury 
of thinking about whether the water seen in the distance really exists 
or not, he will simply run towards it. 

All our striving is centered around happiness and misery,- therefore 
it is essential to understand the real nature of happiness and misery. 
Maybe it is just because there is the possibility of being either happy 
or miserable that this becomes the cause of our bondage. 

What is happiness and what is misery? They look contradictory, 
quite opposite to each other, but it is not so. They are two sides of 
the same coin. We do not notice it, but a strange thing happens: what 
we call happiness today becomes our misery tomorrow, what we call 
misery today may become our happiness tomorrow. In fact tomorrow 
is too far away — just within moments our happiness can become 
misery. It is possible also that even as we are calling it happiness it has 
already become misery. 

I 156 | 

Those who have studied the human mind deeply assert that as 
soon as someone says, "This is happiness," it has already converted 
into misery — because if it is happiness, then there is no space even 
to say "This is happiness." You only have this space when it is already 

The first thing to be understood is that happiness and misery are 
not contradictory, they are interchangeable, like waves — sometimes 
washing up on this shore and sometimes on the other shore. We all 
know this, and we have seen our happiness changing into misery, but 
we never learn from it. We don’t allow the mind to learn its lesson,- 
as soon as one happiness changes into misery, we immediately rush 
off in search of another source of happiness. We don’t stay to see 
that what we knew as happiness yesterday has become misery today 
- and maybe it is always like that, that whatever we come to know as 
happiness will necessarily change into misery. The mind will say that 
this might actually have been misery in the first place; there must 
have been some mistake — it must have already been misery, it was just 
an illusion to perceive it as happiness. 

That is why it is amazing that the greater the happiness you 
can imagine, the greater the misery you are in when it changes. If 
you don’t get much happiness from something, the misery is also 
diminished in the same proportion when it changes. The proportion 
will be just the same. 

For example, if a man has an arranged marriage settled by his 
parents he has not much expectation of happiness. As a result he 
is not very miserable. An arranged marriage does not bring as much 
misery as a love-marriage, because there is not that much expectation 
for happiness through an arranged marriage. What is there to be 
broken? What is there to be damaged or shattered? There will be no 
great misery when it breaks up — of love withering away, of splitting 
up. The greater the expectation, the greater the misery that follows. 

For the last one hundred years the West has believed that to marry 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

for love would bring much happiness to their lives. And they were 
right. But what they did not know was the other side, that a love- 
marriage would also bring much misery, that it would come in equal 
measures. The greater the expectation of happiness, the greater the 
misery when it changes. 

Eastern people were wise in a way, their approach was different. 
They tried not to expect too much happiness so that when the 
inevitable change came it would not bring too much misery. 

An arranged marriage gives neither too much happiness nor too 
much misery. So arranged marriages work, while a love-marriage does 
not work because when things change after the expectation of so 
much happiness, it brings a lot of misery. When the peak is desired 
and the abyss happens, the break is certain. 

Man can only walk on even ground where there are neither too 
many abysses nor too many peaks. He cannot walk for very long 
where a fall from the peak into the abyss is inevitable. This is why, 
after the experience of only a hundred years, the West is shifting from 
love-marriages to no marriage at all. 

For five thousand years, arranged marriages without love have 
worked in the East. Marriage without love is like flat ground - neither 
the deep abyss, nor the high peaks. But the West could not maintain 
the concept of marrying for love for even a hundred years. Now 
the intelligent man is discarding the whole institution of marriage,- 
there seems to be no need to continue with it. For the sake of greater 
happiness people are choosing to remain free, the institution of 
marriage is being discarded. 

But this is the same mistake. It was thought that arranged marriages 
should be abandoned for the sake of attaining more happiness, which 
would supposedly be more available in a love-marriage. Love-marriage 
does give more happiness, but only for a little while, and then it leaves 
an abyss of misery behind. And this abyss of misery seems to be much 
deeper compared to the momentary happiness. 

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Going beyond the Senses 

The Western intelligentsia is again repeating the same mistake by 
doing away with marriage in the hope of achieving more happiness. 
What they don’t understand is that more happiness will also be 
followed by more misery. The mistake is natural, because we only 
know happiness and misery as opposites, not as they really are — a 
flowing, interchanging reality. They are changing all the time, without 
even a moment’s break in continuity. 

Based on this understanding, the East has carried out another 
experiment - that if happiness converts into misery, then why can’t 
misery be converted into happiness? This understanding gave birth 
to the principle of tapa, purification through austerities. This principle 
of purification through austere discipline is unique. It came out of 
the understanding that if happiness converts into misery, then there 
should be no difficulty in converting misery into happiness. In fact in 
the East it has been found that misery can be converted into happiness 
— if you accept your misery, then it starts turning into happiness. If 
you get settled in your happiness, it starts turning into misery. 

Change comes through your acceptance. Whenever you accept a 
situation, it becomes ready to change. As soon as you accept it, the 
change begins. As soon as you say, "This is happiness, 1 want to live 
only in this happiness, 1 don’t want it to change," it has already started 
changing. If you are able to say this, even in misery: 1 accept it and 
no change is needed — then you would be following this principle of 
self-purification. And it is very interesting to note that misery turns 
into happiness. 

If you have to choose between the two, it would be wiser to choose 
the art of changing misery into happiness than the art of changing 
happiness into misery. Why is that so? — because the happiness of 
one who has managed to change his misery into happiness does 
not then revert back into misery. If he can even change misery into 
happiness, how then can his happiness ever change into misery? 
When one can change even misery into happiness, then happiness 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

no longer has any power over him and therefore a change to its 
opposite does not happen. 

In fact someone who can change his misery into happiness has 
already dropped the desire for happiness, that’s why he could change 
it. And when there is no desire for happiness, happiness loses its 
capacity to change itself into misery. It is the desire that gives it that 
capacity. Experiment with it and you will be surprised. 

Acceptance is the deepest alchemy for transformation within 
human nature. Accept misery when it comes to you. It is because 
of the rejection that it is misery, it is because of the denial that 
it is misery. Accept whatever comes wholeheartedly, agree to 
whatever comes — embrace it, live with it, do not desire to get rid of 
it — and suddenly you will find that everything has changed. What 
you originally felt was misery has turned into happiness through 
your acceptance. 

Happiness can change into misery, misery into happiness - 
why? Because they are two faces of the same coin. And why do 
they change? What is the reason for this change? In fact when a 
man lives in happiness, he can even get bored with this happiness. 
Long association breeds boredom - it is natural. Even happiness can 
become boring. 

You love someone and want his company for twenty-four hours of 
the day, but if you have his company all the time eventually you will 
be wishing you could get rid of him, at least for a little while. You will 
want to be alone for a while. This is very natural. Now, the separation 
from the same person whose company once gave you happiness, 
brings happiness. 

One becomes bored. The mind gets tired. In fact the mind gets 
tired of whatever you get to know well. The mind will get tired 
of anything that it knows well. Then it will start searching for 
something new. Even a tasty thing can soon become tasteless. Do 
not repeat the food tomorrow that you enjoyed today - even by 

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Going beyond the Senses 

mistake — or the day after that; otherwise you will lose your taste 
for it. The sage says: 

.. when one focuses on the pleasant 
it is the happiness-oriented mind, 
and when one focuses on the unpleasant 
it is the misery-oriented mind. 

To imagine something as pleasing is happiness, and to imagine 
something as not pleasing is misery. And the pleasant changes into 
the unpleasant and the unpleasant into the pleasant. 

Alcoholics say that in the beginning alcohol doesn’t taste good; 
they say that you have to develop a taste for it. Those who know 
say that actually the sense of taste has to be ruined, it has to be 
destroyed. When you start drinking coffee it doesn t taste good, but 
coffee drinkers say, "Don’t worry, practice will make it taste better. 
You have to develop a taste for it." 

Man somehow develops a taste for anything! You start smoking; 
on the first day it is really unpleasant, but you imagine that it must 
be a pleasure because everyone else is enjoying it, and they can t all 
be fools. The new smoker sees that even those people who prohibit 
smoking are smoking. They are saying, We are addicted; don t you 
also start to smoke." The new smoker feels there must be some deep 
secret, something hidden, some pleasure to enjoy which is being 
denied him. When he smokes for the first time it is so unpleasant 
that it hardly appears to be a pleasure. Inhaling the smoke it tastes 
bitter, there is nothing pleasant about it - making him cough and feel 
uneasiness, his head gets hot - but he is hoping for some pleasure 
and goes on imagining that happiness will happen. Slowly this misery 
changes into pleasure. Slowly this discomfort changes into happiness. 

Practice turns misery into pleasure and pleasure into misery. If you 
go on tolerating misery, your sensitivity decreases and you become 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

accustomed to it. Misery becomes a habit. If you are continually 
happy it creates boredom, it creates uneasiness, and you want to get 
rid of it also. 

If we can understand what is pleasant and what is not pleasant 
then we can understand how happiness turns into suffering. What 
is pleasant? What do you call pleasant? The sage has said: What is 
favorable to and in accord with the senses is pleasing - in harmony 
with the senses, not you — and what is not favorable to and in accord 
with the senses is unpleasing. 

Music is pleasing when the musical vibrations are in harmony 
with your ears — then it does not disturb you, then the music does 
not trouble you but instead it helps to pacify the turmoil within. But 
this is not always so. For a man who is in deep silence even music is 
unpleasant, because even music is a disturbance. 

A great Western musician, Schubert, used to say this about music: 
Music is a composition of sounds which are the least unpleasant, the 
least disturbing. But there is disturbance, because, after all, music 
too is an outcome of friction. The ultimate music is silence, and for 
someone who knows that silence, music is not a joy to his ear. 

Hui-Hai was a great Chinese musician. The deeper his music 
went, the more silent his musical instrument became. Then one day 
he threw his instrument away. His fame had spread far and wide, 
people used to come to hear him from distant places. But the next 
day, in the morning, when new visitors came to listen to him and they 
saw him sitting under a tree without his instrument, they asked him 
where it was. 

Hui-Hai answered, "Now this instrument has become a 
disturbance to the music. When the music becomes complete, the 
veena - the musical instrument, has to be discarded." 

And there is a reason for it. If we understand it rightly, then 
musical sounds are enchanting to our ears because there are so many 
unpleasant sounds within us, there is so much disturbance and so 

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Going beyond the Senses 

much chaos within us. In that chaos, these enchanting sounds are 
like tranquilizers. They feel pleasant, they are consoling, and they 
create a kind of silence. But if the music is chaotic, only a frantic 
noise, it becomes distasteful and painful to the ears because it creates 
uneasiness and there is no tranquility achieved. 

Within our physical system, the senses are the doors that allow 
the happenings which occur in the outer world to enter inside. What¬ 
ever makes them feel calm and quiet is pleasant to them, whatever 
makes them uneasy is unpleasant to them. That is all that pleasant 
and "unpleasant" mean, nothing more than this. But what pacifies 
the senses today may disturb them tomorrow, because the senses 
themselves are like a flowing river, changing from moment to moment. 

For example, a new employee goes to work for the Indian Railways,- 
he lies down to sleep on the railway station platform but he can get 
no sleep at all because of the noise of the trains coming and going, 
the engines shunting and whistling, and many other disturbances that 
don’t allow him to sleep. The ears are bombarded with noise, but 
sleep is a basic need, so after a while this uneasiness drops away and 
sleep descends. But now what happens is that this man cannot sleep 
at home because all the noise and commotion has become a part of 
his sleep. He can only sleep when all of these disturbances are going 
on, not otherwise. It has become a part of the sleeping process. That 
disturbance has become a necessity. 

Many people come to me complaining of disturbance, uneasiness, 
troubles, and 1 know well that if they were to be deprived of these 
disturbances they would pray to God to get them back. They don t 
understand,- they don’t know that these are their rituals, that they 
cannot live without these troubles. If they were sent into seclusion 
they would be wanting to return within four days because they would 
be feeling vacant, empty, meaningless. Meaning only exists for them 
when all their troubles are present. Why is this? 

If you go on feeding the senses unpleasant things, they will adapt 

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to them within a few days because they have to, they are helpless, 
and when they have become adapted, those things which were once 
unpleasant are now pleasurable. Or, if you are continually eating 
delicious food, your sensitivity will decrease and so the taste will 
decrease, and what was once delicious then becomes distasteful. 

A famous poet had come to meet me, and we were talking. A little 
later a musician also came in. The musician requested the poet to 
recite a few poems. The poet said, "Excuse me, but I am really fed up 
with poetry. Let us talk about anything else, but not about poetry." 
He was a famous poet, but bored with poetry. But it is natural. And 
that is why, amazingly enough, it can happen that many times in his 
life a man will take a leap — a quantum leap. 

Sometimes very intelligent people will start indulging in very 
unintelligent things just for the sake of change; the change is needed 
because they are bored. Hence you might come across a chief justice 
of some high court sitting at the feet of a very ordinary villager who 
has no experience, no depth, no value. What has happened to this 
chief justice? He has become fed up with his intellect, he has had 
enough of it. He cannot get rid of the burden of his intellect until 
he does something unintelligent. Seeing him, and knowing him to 
be an intellectual man, many stupid people will follow suit. He has 
paved the way for unintelligent people to follow him, people who 
are not even aware that he is simply bored with his own intellect - 
utterly bored. 

What is pleasant now will not always stay pleasant. There are a lot 
of reasons for this. You are changing every moment. The child enjoys 
his toys, but after a certain age he will not enjoy them anymore because 
a child does not remain a child, he has to throw away the toys. And 
these are the same toys which, if they had been broken earlier, would 
have been like the death of a loved one for the child. But one day he 
will leave these toys behind him because his consciousness is always 
growing. What was interesting yesterday becomes uninteresting 

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Going beyond the Senses 

today. The child will run after new toys, not understanding that these 
are also toys. 

Yesterday he dressed up his doll, today he will dress up his 
woman. But it is the same idea. Yesterday he wanted his doll to be 
admired, today he wants his wife to be admired. But the doll was 
just a doll; one day he discarded it without any difficulty - it is not 
so easy to discard a wife. In just a few days his mind will be fed up 
with her and he will be in anguish, then old promises and assurances 
will create problems. Man finds himself bound by his own creations: 
"I created all this, 1 said all that, and now it is difficult to turn from 
it." Now the charm has been lost, the infatuation is gone and he has 
no interest left in her. 

We are continuously changing. When this same man was young 
he did not like to go to the temple. He would pass by the temple 
thinking that people had to be mad to go there. Then, the brothel was 
the place that was more to his liking and more pleasing, the temple 
was a place for fools. But the temple was soon to become meaningful. 

Carl Gustav Jung wrote in his memoirs that most of the patients 
who came to be treated by him were over forty years of age. Their 
only problem was that they had forgotten where the gates of the 
temple were, the only trouble with them was that they did not even 
know about the existence of the temple. After the age of forty the 
gates of the temple start becoming meaningful - but even that is a toy. 

There are toys for children, for young people and for old people, 
and until the day you become fed up with all of it, unless and until you 
become free of all your toys, your troubles will persist, even though 
they will change. 

So someone who has become fed up with decorating his woman 
now decorates his statue of Lord Rama and parades his statue of his 
god. But he does not understand that this too will not last. How long 
can this new fad continue? How long can one go on changing dolls? 
But he can’t conceive that what is a pleasure today will become stale 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

tomorrow. What can we do? Let us try to understand the nature of 
liking and disliking. 

Whatsoever appears pleasing to the senses in that moment, 
whatsoever appears to be soothing and rhythmic, is called happiness, 
and whatsoever goes against them is called misery. "I like happiness 
and I dislike misery; I want happiness to come in abundance and 
misery to stay away." This desire is the reason for the attachment 
to the body because the body’s senses are the doors for happiness; 
and it is right there that misery can also be stopped. For this reason 
the consciousness identifies with the body and is trapped, and unless 
one transcends both happiness and misery by understanding their 
nature correctly, one cannot go beyond the body. That is why, after 
explaining about the five bodies, the sage immediately starts talking 
about happiness and misery. 

Talking about happiness and misery is meaningful, because talking 
about the five bodies alone won’t help unless we know the reasons 
for our identification with the body. The state through which we can 
break with this identification is what is called purification through 

Don’t desire happiness, and don’t have an aversion to misery; 
don’t ask for happiness, and don’t reject misery. Someone who asks 
only for happiness and avoids misery will remain attached to the body. 
Someone who does not ask for happiness and accepts misery when it 
comes, begins to get rid of his attachment to the body. 

It is the expectation of happiness and the fear of misery that 
makes one an extrovert, and it is the no-expectation of happiness 
and a fearlessness towards misery that turns one within. This is the 
difference between indulgence and purification through austerities. 

If you ask for happiness you will have to fight for it, so as to hold 
on to it and to avoid any misery. A fierce struggle is inevitable. Hence 
the consciousness will always have to be engaged outside in all the 
external things like property, power, money, other people and so on. 

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Purification through austerity means that "No, 1 have no desire 
for happiness. I have known many experiences of happiness and 
have seen them all turning into misery so many times. Now I have 
no desire for happiness anymore, nor is there any desire to avoid 
misery." You have avoided misery again and again but it never ends, 
it only becomes more persistent and instead you experience more 
misery in trying to avoid it - it comes back with a vengeance. So 
you must neither avoid misery nor ask for happiness, now just accept 
whatsoever comes. Now the inner journey begins and the external 
struggle no longer exists. And it is this inner journey which can free 
you from the bondage of the body. 

A person who does something to create happiness or to avoid 
misery, the sage calls a doer. But the person to whom happiness and 
misery make no difference, who accepts every situation, does not 
continue to be a doer, he becomes a non-doer. And once you have 
become a non-doer, existence itself becomes the doer. This state 
gave birth to the precious concept of destiny. 

Destiny has nothing to do with astrology, it is concerned with 
spirituality,- it has nothing to do with the lines of the palm, it is not 
related to the future, it has nothing to do with the street astrologer. 
The idea of destiny is born when you cease to be the doer and things 
begin to happen on their own. You remain a doer as long as you are 
doing something to attain happiness and to avoid misery,- you are the 
doer as long as you continue to struggle. But when you cease to be 
the doer, accepting whatever comes — not bothering about the result, 
whether it be happiness or misery - slowly the differences disappear 
and it even becomes difficult to recognize happiness and misery as 
such. You become indifferent towards both. 

In this indifference the doer will disappear, because there is 
nothing left to do. And what was it that you had to do? There was 
only one thing — to work out how to obtain happiness and how to 
avoid misery. That was your only activity. Now no action is needed 

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and still things will go on happening. When man is not the doer 
existence becomes the doer, and when existence is the doer this state 
is called destiny, fate. 

Then if such a man is going to be beheaded he can say, "This is 
how it was meant to be." He does not even blame the executioner, 
because now he trusts that no one is the doer. For him the doer 
has disappeared - it was meant to happen. And if such a person is 
poisoned he says, "It was meant to happen, 1 had to drink the poison." 
And if someone who at the time of taking poison recognizes it as 
a happening, he cannot feel anger even for a moment towards the 
one who gives him the poison, because now he knows that no one is 
the doer. He does not accuse anyone and no one else is responsible,- 
whatever is happening is the ultimate destiny, it has nothing to do 
with others. It is not surprising if such a person attains to ultimate 
peace and the ultimate contentment. 

One who chooses between happiness and misery will never attain 
contentment, the one who distinguishes between happiness and 
misery will never find satisfaction. But the one who abandons all the 
distinctions between happiness and misery is contented. 

Sometimes valuable ideas become the bases for foolish concepts. 
People who say, "Happiness lies in contentment" are mad, they 
do not know what contentment is and they are still connecting 
contentment with happiness. They are teaching you that if you want 
happiness, just be content. And yet if you are striving for happiness 
you cannot be contented, because the desire for happiness is the 
very root cause of discontent. Whoever strives for happiness will 
also be trying to avoid misery, otherwise he cannot be desiring 
happiness. So how can he be contented? 

Happiness is not contentment, contentment is not happiness. 
Contentment is beyond both happiness and misery, and only the 
one who abandons the distinction between happiness and misery 
is contented. Contentment transcends both. If you are choosing 

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contentment for happiness you are in an illusion and your contentment 
is a mere deception. 

Destiny, fate and fortune are great spiritual words. They denote 
a state of egolessness, a state where there is no ego, no complaint, 
where whatsoever comes is totally accepted - and there is no reason 
for it to be any other way, it could not have been otherwise. Desire 
for anything different no longer exists. The dream that something 
different should have happened does not arise. 

If this total acceptance, this devotion to suchness, pacifies all the 
waves of thoughts inside you, is there any surprise in it? Is it surprising 
if all the waves in you disappear? And with this disappearance of the 
waves, you will go on sinking deeper and deeper within yourself. 

The senses are the cause of both happiness and misery. 

The senses - sound, touch, sight, taste, smell - 
are the causes of both happiness and misery. 

When the soul is identified 
with its karmically acquired body, 
this is a diseased embodied soul. 

You dwell in the body but you are not the body. To dwell in the 
body and to be identified with the body are two different things. The 
one who knows that he is in the body is the soul, and the one who 
thinks that he is the body is the embodied soul - and this embodied 
soul is diseased, it has fallen into illusion. It really does not know that 
which it is, it knows itself as that which it is not. 

Why does this identification with the body happen? - because 
of happiness and misery! As long as we desire happiness and avoid 
misery, then we identify ourselves with whatever seems to accomplish 
that. The lover says to his beloved, "There is no distinction between 
you and me anymore,- we have become one” — although this oneness 
can never happen. But he says "We have become one" — why? 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

Because we want to identify with that which brings us happiness, 
and any distance which might lessen this happiness is not bearable. 
Even a little distance is unacceptable,- the smallest separation has to 
be eliminated. We want to get so close that no space is left between us 
because any distance may be a hindrance to our happiness. 

Hence we identify with that which gives us happiness, and we 
create a distance from that which causes pain. We avoid it, we don’t 
want to look at it, and we don’t want to go near it. We want to keep 
completely away from it. We will even think of killing someone who 
causes us pain, the very fact that he is alive feels to be a kind of 
nearness. He may be living anywhere - in the Himalayas, in Tibet 
- but if he is alive it feels that "He is breathing the same air I am 
breathing," or "He is under the same sky that I am." We do not want 
to tolerate even this much of him, we want to eliminate him,- he 
should not live, he should not exist, only then will we be at ease. The 
distance between us should become as vast as it is between the dead 
and the living. So whosoever causes us misery we wish to keep him 
far away, and whosoever is a cause of happiness we wish to keep close. 

Now the amazing thing is that whenever we experience happiness 
we think that we are getting it from our body, but whenever we 
experience misery we think that we are getting it from somebody 
else. This is really quite amazing! It is a mystery that whenever we 
are experiencing happiness we think it is coming from our body, that 
no one else is responsible for this happiness, that we ourselves are 
responsible for it. But as far as pain is concerned, we always feel that 
someone else is responsible. 

If someone loves you, you simply think that you are worthy of 
love, that this is how it should be, there is no reason even to feel 
grateful: 1 am worthy to be loved. But if somebody gets angry with 
you, then you think that this person is a scoundrel and that he is just 
full of anger. Then you do not consider yourself to be worthy of this 
anger at all. 

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Both of these things are together. Any division is a fabrication, 
a deception. Either you accept both or you accept neither of them. 
As long as you choose one of these two, your journey towards truth 
becomes easy. One can choose either way. Either you are both worthy 
of love and worthy of hate - and if this is your choice, then one will 
negate the other because it is not possible to be both at the same 
time,- or if your choice is that you are neither this nor that, neither 
worthy of love nor worthy of hate — then too you become empty. 

But it is a trick we play that we take it for granted that we deserve 
all the happiness that comes our way. If misery comes it is a gift from 
someone else, someone else is always the cause of it. 

That is why no one ever asks why such a thing as happiness exists in 
the world. But people ask me, "Why does so much misery exist in the 
world?" 1 have not met a single person who has asked why happiness 
exists. They take it for granted that they deserve happiness, so there 
is nothing to question, that this is how it should be. The real question 
is: "Why is there misery?" 

No one ever asks me, "Why is man alive?” They ask me, Why 
does man die? Why is there death?" Life is taken for granted. But 
why is there death? Life appears to be within us, but death comes 
from somewhere outside. A strange idea! And we think that death is 
far away, coming from the outside to kill us. Life is ours, but death 
is an outsider which sometimes comes in the disguise of an illness, 
in the form of a bacteria or a virus, in the shape of an enemy - but it 
always comes from the outside, it comes to kill us. So your question 
remains, "How to avoid it?" And yet you go on thinking that you are 
life itself! 

It is always our method that whatever is a happiness to us and 
whatever gives us joy, we connect it with ourselves,- and whatever 
is miserable, painful, we connect it with someone else. That is why 
the religions had to conceive of the existence of Satan along with 
the existence of God. All this trouble! It seems very difficult to 

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understand life without the existence of Satan. It is conceivable that 
God is compassionate - but then a child dies of cancer. What is the 
explanation? And this child has not yet committed a single sin — no 
theft, no murder, nothing of that kind — and even so he died, or he 
was born dead. But if it was meant to happen in this way, then why 
did God create him in the first place? If he was to be born dead, then 
why this nonsense of going through birth? At least God should have 
known that the child was going to be born dead. Then why did he go 
to so much trouble? 

So we have had to invent another personality to project onto, 
because we want to identify ourselves with God. But if even God 
gives cancer to a child, while old men wishing to die continue to live 
and cannot die, and millions of people are hungry, and wars are waged 
in which millions die — if all this occurs in spite of the existence of 
God, how can we identify with God? That is why we have to keep 
God’s image completely virtuous and good. But how will we deal with 
evil? Who is causing it? For this another god has to be created, and 
we call him the Devil. The Devil is the god of evil, he is to blame,- the 
Devil is the cause behind all evil. 

Hinduism is the only religion on earth which has dared to accept 
both attributes in God - and it is only because of this that I hold 
that no other religion has been able to understand truth as deeply 
as Hinduism. Hindus have attributed both aspects to their God - 
Mahadeva, or Shiva - who is both the creator and the destroyer,- he 
is the lord of poison and nectar both. It is a daring statement! And 
to be with such a God is a great revolution because all logic has to 
fall away. All our logic of identifying ourselves with good and putting 
the evil aside will fail; that if you steal the Devil has provoked you, if 
you pray it is your doing. Strange idea! If you give to charity it is your 
doing, but if you steal there are evil forces that are doing the stealing 
through you! 

So we want to be identified with good but not with evil. But the 

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Going beyond the Senses 

world is a combination of both. Either refuse both or accept both; in 
either case you will be liberated from both. 

Our bondage with the body is because we say that the body is 
the source of all happiness and any misery is inflicted by others. And 
so you avoid others, or change the others - or else be with others 
until they start causing you pain, and when they do cause you pain 
you move away from them. Marriage and divorce doesn’t only exist 
between a husband and a wife, it exists in all relationships. 

A friend who used to visit me always asked, "How can my 
intelligence grow, how can an alert intelligence be awakened in me? 

I would console him that, "It will grow, the possibility of growth 
exists. Make an effort." 

He would happily go away thinking of this possibility. Intelligence 
does not awaken because of a possibility, it awakens through your 
effort, but he would go away happily, and he was very pleased. He 
would come for such consolation once or twice a month. In this way, 
he would get enough momentum to last for ten or fifteen days, living 
as usual with the consolation of this possibility. This would continue 
for some fifteen days, and then whenever he would run out of fuel he 
would again come to me, and again go away with some reassurance. 
This went on for a while, and then I thought that no possibility could 
become a reality in this way, so the next time he came I said, Now 
there is no longer any possibility" 

He was taken aback. At first he could not get the point: "What do 
you mean, no possibility?" 

I said, "There is no possibility. There is no intelligence in you 
which can grow, and wakeful intelligence is not so easily acquired. It 
is beyond your capacity, just drop the very idea. " 

His face became pale, and he went away very sad. Now he is 
against me, and he says, "This man is not right." 

I was the right man as long as I kept assuring him of some 
possibility, and he could leave happily and radiant with joy. But now I 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

am the wrong man. He tells other people, "Don’t go to him, he is not 
the right man to go to." 

This is very strange. I was right while I pleased him, and as long as 1 
pleased him, he thought of himself as great because of this possibility. 
But now 1 have become a source of pain to him because 1 said that 
there was no way for him to grow, and that his hell was certain. 

We want to identify with all that is pleasing to us, we want to be 
with it,- and we want to separate ourselves from that which is painful. 
And so we are attached to our bodies because we think that the body 
is the source of our happiness. The sages have called this identification 
with the body "the disease," the only disease - the illusion of thinking 
that the soul, the self is the body. 

The only way to get rid of this disease is to realize the fact that 
the body is the source of happiness and misery both. They will negate 
each other, and then you will have to search for that which is the 
source of bliss - which is neither happiness nor misery. 

Bliss is neither happiness nor misery, it is the absence of both. 
That is what we have to search for. 

Enough for today. 

Now let us try to recede from the body, try to withdraw from 
the body. 

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Chapter - 9 

You Are Your Prison 

Mind, life-current, desire, 

piety and virtue are the five basic knots. 

When the embodied soul is identified 
with the nature of these five knots, 
it cannot become free of them 
without self-realization. 

As these five afflict the soul like subtle diseases, 
then the soul is known as ling sharir, 
the identification body. 

This is the knot in the heart. 

That which illuminates there as the consciousness 
is kshetragya, the knower field. 

Man’s bondage does not come from outside of himself, his prison is 
within — it is created by him within himself. It appears to us that we live 
only on the outside,- it appears that happiness exists on the outside, 
that misery exists on the outside, that all achievement is outside, all 
defeat and victory are outside, all success and failure are outside - 
but it only appears to be this way. In fact everything is within: all 
striving is within, all attainment is also within,- our failure is within, 
the happiness which seems to be on the outside is experienced within 
and the source of misery which seems to be coming from the outside 
is also hidden within. 

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Your beloved may seem to be on the outside but the center of love 
is within. If the center of love within is destroyed, then no beloved 
can be seen outside. Gold is outside but the greed for it is within. If 
there is no greed, then what is the difference between gold and dust? 
The difference is because of this greed. The expanse of objects is 
outside, but the seed is within. 

The sage describes five basic knots; man’s inner disease has been 
divided into five categories, as five knots. Try to understand each and 
every category. 

The first knot is the mind and its whole creation. The mind has 
been called an entanglement, a disease, a sickness. Why? 

If we stand on the seashore and there is a storm with high waves 
and a mighty wind blowing, the ocean itself cannot be seen, the only 
thing visible is the wild dance of the roaring waves. The ocean is also 
within these waves and these waves are also a form of the ocean - 
they are born out of the ocean, they are a shape of the ocean — but 
still these waves are not the ocean, because the ocean can be without 
waves. After the storm the sea is tranquil; the waves have gone, but 
the sea remains. 

The opposite can never happen - it is not possible for the ocean 
to disappear while the waves remain. The waves can disappear but the 
ocean will remain. The disappearance of the waves doesn’t disturb 
the existence of the ocean, but if the ocean disappears it won’t be 
possible to save the waves. So the ocean is the source,- the waves 
appear and disappear. 

The ocean of human consciousness is just like that: thoughts are 
the waves, the patterns rising in it. That is why I told you yesterday 
that there is no such thing as a peaceful mind. Have you ever seen 
a peaceful storm? It is meaningless to say "peaceful storm." If it is a 
storm it cannot be peaceful, if it is peaceful it cannot be a storm. But 
we say "silent mind" - it is a linguistic error. As long as the mind is 
there the disturbance continues, restlessness persists. 

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You Are Your Prison 

Disturbance is another word for the mind. Existentially, 
disturbance and mind are synonymous - but not in the dictionary. 
If you look in the dictionary you will not find anywhere the word 
disturbance meaning mind, or mind meaning disturbance. It is not 
necessary for etymologists to know existence. Those who do know 
existence don’t create language because they say, "It is difficult to 
express it in language." 

The existential experience is: where there is disturbance, there 
is mind. Mind means disturbance, so the words peaceful mind are 
contradictory,- such a state cannot exist. Just as there is no such thing 
as a healthy disease or a calm storm, so there is also nothing like a 
peaceful mind. 

A diseased person can become healthy, remember it, but the 
disease itself can never be healthy. The diseased man can become 
healthy because the disease is not the diseased,- it is separate from 
him, it comes and it goes. It is very interesting to note that the sick 
man can be without the disease, but the disease cannot exist without 
the sick man. Consciousness can exist without mind, but mind cannot 
exist without consciousness. 

Mind is a disease. The sage sees it as granlbi - a knot, a bondage, 
a disease, an illness. Mind is a disease. Mind is a disturbed state of 
consciousness — agitated, unstable and full of waves. When peace 
is achieved mind disappears, it ceases,- when peace disappears, 
mind appears. 

If we go deep into it, there is a reason why we describe it as a knot. 
Understand the word granthi, because it is a valuable word in yoga 
terminology. It is so valuable that when Mahavira became enlightened 
the Jainas called him nirgrantba - free of all th egranthis, knots — he who 
has no knot within. Try to understand this concept of a knot. 

A knot is a strange thing. You must have seen many knots but 
had never noticed this: that when you tie a knot in a rope, is there 
any change in the rope, in its nature, in its existence? Does it weigh 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

more? Is there any qualitative change? What happens to the rope? 
Nothing happens to the rope - but even then, a lot happens. Nothing 
happens to the rope, nothing is added to it and nothing is taken away ; 
it remains as it is, but still it is not the same,- it is knotted, entangled. 
The rope’s nature is not changed a bit, but a knot can arise without 
any change in its nature. Actually nothing is changed in the rope, yet 
everything is changed. The rope is of no more use ; now you cannot 
tie anything with it because it itself is entangled. Now it is of no use, 
but there is no qualitative change, no existential change to it. It has 
not changed at all. 

And what is this knot? Is it an object? Try to understand it 
correctly. Is the knot an object? Had it been an object it would have 
existed without the rope, the knot could have been put aside. But the 
knot cannot be separated from the rope. It does not mean that the 
rope cannot be freed from the knot, it can be. The rope can be freed 
from the knot, but the knot cannot be separated from the rope. You 
cannot separate the knot and the rope into two things. 

So a knot is not an object. It doesn’t have substance, it has no 
independent existence, it is just a form - just a shape, just a form 
without any substance - only a form and nothing of itself in it. Inside 
the knot is the rope, but a knot itself has nothing inside it. A knot is 
nothing in itself-just a form without any substance. Hence it can be 
understood like this: that a knot has no substantial existence, it is just 
form, it only has a form. 

That is why the sages have called this world w amrup, which means 
a name and form with no substantial existence of its own - just like a 
knot. The knot exists in name and is recognizable in form, it creates 
an obstruction and it can be undone, yet it does not exist. The knot is 
maya, illusion. Those who know say that the world is a knot of name 
and form — just a knot. And this applies to man in the same way as it 
applies to the world. 

Man too is just a knot of name and form. If the knot is untangled, 

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You Are Your Prison 

untied, what remains is called the universal self. Man is just a knot; if 
untied, man disappears — the name and form disappear, the one who 
was saying 1 disappears. The I disappears - I is just the sum total of all 
the knots. We will talk of the panchvargas, the five categories,- 1 is the 
name of the sum of these five knots. 

The sage calls the mind the first knot because mind has 
no existence, it only appears to exist, it is only a form. When 
consciousness is disturbed mind is created - it is only a form. A 
dream in the night has no existence but has a form. You go to see a 
film: a film has no existence in reality but has a form on the screen, 
it only appears to exist. And it is strange that even the so-called 
intelligent people can be seen wiping their eyes and drying their 
tears at the cinema. Even an intelligent person cries and laughs at 
a film, although they know perfectly well that nothing exists on 
the screen. 

But the form creates an illusion - the illusion of existence. And 
for a moment, when we are overwhelmed by the form and forget the 
self, then the form becomes very real. If you can remember, next 
time when you go to see a film, do an experiment — try to remember 
yourself continuously and watch the film at the same time. Then tears 
will be impossible. Tears are possible only if you forget yourself-when 
you forget yourself as the watcher, when you become so identified 
that you forget that you have come to see the film - then only the 
film which you are watching exists and you are not. When the thing 
you are watching becomes everything and the one who is watching is 
forgotten then you can cry, the mind can become sad, the mind can 
become happy everything can happen in the mind, although there is 
nothing real on the screen. 

Mind is form. But the watcher inside, the knower within, has 
forgotten his own existence. That is all. Only this much forgetfulness 
and the film becomes everything,- then the knot is formed. It is formed 
and it becomes stronger. And for many lives we have been sitting in 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

this cinema called the mind. The knot has continued to become more 
and more entangled, making the forms thicker and thicker. 

Why do we call a man "mad"? We call him mad because he has 
a bigger mind than we have, there is no other reason. We only see 
the images within ourselves, but he is seeing the images in the outer 
world also - he has a mind more capable of seeing than you. You also 
talk within yourself to the ones you love, the madman talks out loud 
to his dear ones who are not present because his mind has grown 
more in that dimension, it is bigger than yours. You do it too, but 
secretly, within yourself. His capacity to project is greater than yours, 
he is more skilled; he starts talking to a nonexistent person sitting 
opposite him on a chair. Then we say, "This man has gone mad." 

Is there any qualitative difference between him and us? We also 
talk to our loved ones as if they were sitting in front of us, but we do 
it inside ourselves. Our projecting mechanism is weaker and his is 
more efficient than ours. His projector is so efficient that even if you 
enter into the room - and you are real - he will not be bothered about 
you, he will only be concerned with the nonexistent figure sitting on 
the chair. 

So many poets have written along such lines as: "My beloved, the 
whole audience may be present but if you leave that gathering, then 
nobody else exists for me,- and when you are present, then no one else 
may be there and yet the whole world is present for me." 

The poet is a little crazy, that is why he sees that which we can’t 
see, he senses that which we can’t sense, he creates that which we 
can’t create. Hence there is some similarity between the poet and a 
madman. Perhaps the poet is a madman with some method, while the 
madman is a poet without any method, he does not know any order. 
But one quality is common to both of them - a capacity to see that 
which is not. 

The mind is a machine which can see that which is not there, 
so the mind is a mechanism which can drive one mad. The mind 

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You Are Your Prison 

is an expansion of dreaming. This is the first knot. The one who is 
entangled in the mind can never attain to his real self, because the 
only way to become entangled in the mind is through forgetting 
your self. You cannot know the self and retain your mind at the same 
time. Forgetting your self is essential for the mind to exist — mind 
is not possible without the forgetfulness of the real self — and if you 
remember the self, then mind will disappear. With an awareness of the 
self, with the awakening of the watcher, all images start fading away, 
becoming only name and form for you. No substance is left in them, 
they lose their hold. So what to do? 

This mind is the first knot. If we can awaken our awareness to 
this knot, it will open. To open any knot, the device to use is to 
bring in the watcher, the awareness,- witnessing is the device to 
undo any knot. We all want to untangle our knots, but an interesting 
thing happens. We all want to untangle our entanglements, all of us 
— it is difficult to find a person who does not want to - yet why does 
nothing get untangled? 

It is often observed that those trying to untangle themselves get 
even more and more tangled. The effort to undo the knot doesn’t 
work — instead, the entanglement gets worse and worse, although 
everyone wants to get untangled. We must be making a basic mistake 
somewhere. We all want to become disentangled without awakening 
the witness. 

We want to disentangle the mind using the mind - this is the 
mistake! The mind is an entanglement, hence the mind cannot 
unknot itself. And trying to undo the knot of the mind through 
the mind is like trying to grab one’s own hand with the same hand, 
trying to hold a pair of tongs with those same tongs, searching for 
one’s spectacles with those very spectacles on one’s nose. Some 
people do that - it is not unusual - and we are all doing the same as 
far as the mind is concerned. 

Have you ever seen a dog chasing his own tail? A dog is sitting 

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in the street; the morning sun is rising, he is sitting idly with his tail 
lying close to him — his own tail — and the dog pounces on it to try to 
catch this tail. The tail moves away. Naturally, the dog gets angry — it 
becomes a challenge - there is a limit! It is only a little tail and yet it 
escapes him. The dog jumps with more strength and the tail moves 
more quickly. A deep enmity emerges. The tail is his own, and the 
dog himself is the catcher,- it will never be caught and the dog will get 
tired. He does not know that his jump is also a jump for the tail - that 
they are not two different things. 

The mind which you are using to undo the knot is itself the 
mechanism that creates it — so whatever you do with the mind, it 
goes on becoming more and more knotted. 

Hence you should be aware that as the human mind develops the 
number of insane people will also increase,- the more undeveloped 
the mind is, the less insanity there is. Primitive societies produce 
very few insane people. Sociologists say that in prehistoric times 
the society rarely produced a single insane person, and that this 
person was not called insane, he was revered because he was rare, 
he was special. So in a primitive society someone who was insane 
could become a messiah, he was revered because he had a quality 
which no one else had. 

Today mad people are in trouble: now no one is ready to accept 
them as messiahs and instead many are ready to consider a messiah to 
be mad. The situation has totally changed. Slowly, slowly insanity is 
becoming such a usual thing that just as very rich people in India say 
with pride that such and such a renowned physician is their private 
physician, a rich American says, "Such and such a great psychiatrist 
is my private psychiatrist." Only poor people remain wretched,- they 
can’t say that they have their own private psychiatrist. They have to 
visit hospitals where they need to wait in line with other ordinary 
people to see the psychiatrist. 

Once it was inconceivable that the time would come when people 

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would tell each other such a thing with pride. Now the situation in 
the West is such that people ask each other whether they have or have 
not gone through psychoanalysis. Whosoever hasn’t feels miserable 
because it means he cannot afford it. Psychoanalysis is an expensive 
business - it can take two, three or even five years, and involves 
spending thousands of dollars. So the super-rich announce that they 
have gone through psychoanalysis not only once but twice, three 
times. The extremely rich people go regularly. They have regular 
appointments twice a week to visit the psychiatrist for psychoanalysis. 

In the past it could never have been conceived that mental disease 
would become so common. But there is a reason for it. When you 
educate people, give them the capacity to think, culture, civilization, 
give them so much knowledge, then the mind develops more and the 
knots become more complex. And as the mind grows, its capacity 
to project increases. These capacities can increase to such an extent 
that you become dissatisfied with your mind as it is and you begin 
to look for other help for it. Such things as LSD and marijuana are 
things which make your mind more capable to project. Under the 
influence of LSD you start seeing colors which you have never seen 
before, a beauty which you have never seen before starts spreading 
around you. 

Huxley has written in his memoirs: "When I took mescaline for 
the first time, in a few moments the chair in front of me became 
seven-colored" — more than any rainbow. The chair! — in a short while 
rays started to emanate from it! 

Van Gogh, a great Western painter, once painted a picture of 
a chair. But no one was prepared to recognize this chair as a chair 
until Huxley wrote about it in his memoirs. Van Gogh painted 
it one hundred and fifty years ago. The chair was more colorful 
than ever ordinarily happens — he painted it like a rainbow. People 
thought it was just his imagination, that "A chair never looks 
like that." But Aldous Huxley wrote in his memoirs: "Under the 

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influence of mescaline that chair before me disappeared and a 
colorful, heavenly and transparent chair appeared. Had 1 died at 
that moment I would have felt complete." The experience of this 
chair was so strong and so deep for him. After this experience of 
the chair, it was believed that if an intelligent man like Huxley 
could see these colors in a chair under the influence of mescaline, 
then it was not surprising that a painter like van Gogh had been 
able to see these colors in a chair without mescaline. But van Gogh 
died insane because his mind went into chaos. He started seeing 
that which was not, he started seeing not what was really outside 
but that which had come from within him and was then being 
manifested outside, projected outside. 

We all engage in this phenomenon on a small scale. When a 
money-lover has money in his hand he sees more in it than you do. 
Don’t think that what you see is everything: someone who has not 
loved money can’t see what a money-lover sees in it. 

I know one gentleman: when he holds a currency note in his hand 
which does not even belong to him, he holds it as no lover holds 
his beloved. No poet regards a flower as lovingly as he does when 
he looks at the note. Greed is dripping from his face, he looks at it 
with such fascination,- he establishes an unimaginable connection with 
the note. Now people call him a miser because he will not spend his 
money; spending his money is impossible. But we do not understand 
his fascination, the poetic world he lives in. His condition is like that 
of a poet. 

We are prepared to respect a poet but not this man, and the reason 
for it is that a poet takes nothing from us, while this man appears to 
take money away from us ; otherwise there is no difference between 
the two. We allow the poet to have his pipe dreams, we regard them 
as harmless because he is not snatching another’s dreams. This miser 
also has dreams but they are about money, so people are annoyed by 
him. Hence society condemns him, is angry with him, and calls him a 

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wicked person — in fact considers him to be a sinner. But there is no 
difference between him and the poet. It is just that the miser makes 
money the object of his poetry,- his romance is with money. 

That is why he who loves money cannot love anyone else. He 
needs no other love. His is such a great love that a wife, a son, 
literature, religion — all become secondary. Mind becomes the knot, 
because the watcher is forgotten in this mental projection. When this 
man is looking at a rupee it is impossible to believe that he is still a 
human being, he becomes the rupee. He is not a witness, he does not 
remain a watcher, watching the rupee as separate from him. This man 
becomes the rupee itself. 

Mi ind means that whenever the consciousness has forgotten 
the watcher, the witness, then consciousness wavers and becomes 
diseased - this is the first knot. 

The life-current, pram, is the second knot. We are utterly pulled, 
driven by our lust for life, the survival instinct. Lust for life means 
the yearning, the desire to live, to live at any cost - and without even 
asking why. Nobody asks why to go on living. Just to live.. .as if living 
is enough in itself. 

A man is begging on the street with broken knees, decaying limbs, 
lying in the gutter, rotting, infested with worms, but if you ask him if 
he wants to die he will look at you with anger. And he is not wrong. 
His body may have decayed, but his lust for life never decays and it 
is the same as yours. It may even be more than yours, because the 
dying flame burns luminously, the night is darker before the dawn. 
Feeling death so close at hand he puts all his energy into clinging to 
life, which you may have never done. You have tomorrow to wait for, 
but he has not,- he has to live at any cost. And it is surprising that a 
man agrees to live at any cost. This is why so many cruelties have 
happened in the world, otherwise they could not have been tolerated. 

For five thousand years we have made sudras, the fourth and the 
lowest class among Hindus, creep like insects on the earth. And it 

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would not have been possible except that their lust for life is so deep, 
so strong that they are prepared to live in any situation. 

Millions of people in the world have been enslaved like animals. 
The responsibility for this is not only on the wicked and cunning 
people who enslaved them,- a deeper reason is their lust for life, that 
they want to survive under any conditions. This drive is so strong that 
even if a man is forced to creep and crawl on his hands and knees for 
the rest of his life he will agree to it, because it is better than death. 
Anything is better than death. 

The lust for life holds that anything is better than death. One is 
prepared to live under any circumstances. But if a person has too 
great a drive to survive, then the inner journey becomes impossible. 
He will be attached to the body, to the mind, to his life-current, and 
the attachment will be so strong that he won’t be able to let go. He 
will hold on to everything so tightly that nothing can slip out of his 
grasp — for fear he may become lost. 

People come to me to meditate. During meditation a moment 
certainly comes when one experiences death - the moment is 
inevitable. The feeling of death is so acute - a near-death experience. 
They come to me and they say, "We have come to meditate, not to 
die. What is this that is happening inside? We are afraid we may die." 

1 tell them, "That is such a precious moment, to die within. Don’t 
be afraid to die. Accept this death, then you will never die." 

But they ask, "Is there no other way? This going within, this 
annihilation - is there no easier way?" 

No, there is no other way. Meditation is the experience of death 
- a voluntary death. Your death does come eventually, but then there 
will be no experience of meditation. Death has come to us many 
times — we have died so many times! Even in the future we will die so 
many times. We will go on dying because of this lust for life - life and and and death. The lust for life exhausts us, 
our life never comes to a fulfillment, life is never experienced and the 


You Are Your Prison 

body comes to an end. But the lust for life never ends, it finds another 
body. It goes on finding new bodies...and each time we have to die. 
Death keeps happening, but the lust for life never dies — it is so strong 
that it is reborn again and again. 

What happens in death happens in meditation too, but in death 
it is a forced thing. People become unconscious at the time of death, 
and most die unconsciously. Another life is certain for those who 
die unconsciously, but there will not be another life for those who 
die consciously. Why do we die unconsciously? Unconsciousness is 
not a prerequisite for death. We die unconsciously because this is a 
protective measure of the body. 

Sometimes people say that they are feeling unbearable pain. This 
is completely untrue, because no one can tolerate unbearable pain. 
Man becomes unconscious before unbearable pain begins — this is an 
inbuilt protective measure. When pain increases beyond the limit of 
tolerance one becomes unconscious. This unconscious state signifies 
that the pain threshold has been exceeded; to remain conscious and 
bear the pain is no longer possible, the only way to tolerate it is to 
become unconscious. 

Hence we make use of the unconscious state at the time of an 
operation. A surgeon first anesthetizes the patient, because during 
an operation the pain is going to be unbearable and it is therefore 
humane and helpful to make him unconscious during that experience. 
Nature has its own internal surgical arrangements: whenever pain 
becomes unbearable we become unconscious. So nobody has ever 
experienced unbearable pain. Whatever pain you have felt it was 
bearable, otherwise you would have lost consciousness. 

Death is the greatest surgical operation - a consciousness 
is being removed from the entire body. All other operations are 
only partial - only a part is taken out. Sometimes a bone is taken 
out, sometimes a part, sometimes a piece of flesh and so on - but 
death separates the whole consciousness from the body, and that 

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consciousness is actually identified with the body. That is why the 
possibility of unbearable pain exists. Only people like Buddha do 
not die unconsciously. 

Another interesting thing that happens is that a person who dies 
consciously has a prior knowledge of his death — in a natural way. That 
too is an internal arrangement: he is not informed of his death, but 
his body mechanism itself becomes aware of the impending death. 
But you are not informed prior to your death, because if you come to 
know that you are going to die in seven days you will die even before 
that; these seven days will become a period of terrible death. So you 
are not to be trusted — even your body will not inform you, it will 
hide the secret from you. But someone who can die consciously, he 
comes to know. 

The day that Buddha was to die he told his disciples, "Now, today, 
it is time to depart. If there is anything left to be asked, ask it!" But 
there was no question of asking him anything - they all began to cry, 
to weep, to scream. Buddha said, "Don’t waste time! Don’t be in such 
a hurry to cry, you can do that later on. My time is running out. Do 
you want to ask anything?" But they were so distressed that it was 
impossible to ask any questions. Asking questions is only possible 
when you are at ease. And what kind of man is this Buddha? Is this a 
time to ask questions? 

Ananda said, "No question comes to my mind." 

Buddha asked thrice and then said, "Okay, then you do your work, 
now let me do mine." 

He went under a tree, sat in an appropriate posture with closed 
eyes — and the story goes that he began entering into death. The first 
step was complete. 

Buddha has described the four steps of death. Those four steps 
belong to meditation also. He completed the first step, then the 
second. He was just going to complete the third when a man came 
running from the village and said, "I have heard that Buddha is going 

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You Are Your Prison 

to die, but I have something to ask." They asked him to keep quiet 
saying, "You are too late and Buddha has already begun his final 
journey inwards." 

Death is just a journey for Buddha - a conscious journey. It is not 
that death is coming to Buddha, it is Buddha who himself is entering 
into death. Try to understand this difference correctly. Death comes 
to us,- we go on struggling with it and it goes on overtaking us. Buddha 
himself approaches death, step by step. 

So the disciples said that he was too late. But the man insisted, "1 
can’t stop, I have to ask, because one never knows how many lives it 
will take to find a man like Buddha again. And my question.. 

The disciples asked him, "You idiot, Buddha has been in this town 
for a long time. Where were you?" 

He replied, "That doesn’t matter. 1 knew that Buddha was passing 
through this town for thirty years, but then I was too busy with my 
customers in the shop, sometimes a child was sick at home, once 
there was my daughter’s marriage - I kept postponing it for some 
suitable time but now there is no way. He is close to death." 

Buddha came back from behind the tree and said, "Don’t stop 
him! I was still in the third stage, not in the fourth. 1 don’t want 
to be remembered as someone who was still alive while a man 
with a question had to go away without an answer. Let him have 
his answer." 

This is also a way of dying. But this way of dying is available 
only for one who has already learned the art of dying in meditation. 
The steps in meditation and death are the same because meditation 
disengages us from the body and takes us to the center of our 
consciousness, and death too takes us away from the body to the 
center of consciousness. But in death you are unconscious because 
it is against your will, while in meditation you are conscious because 
it is your own choice. 

So the life-current, the lust for life, is the second knot. The third 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

knot is desiring. Have you ever known a moment when you had no 
desire? If you can even for one moment come to a desireless state, 
in that very moment you become godly. People ask, "Where is God? 
We have a desire to search for him and find him." And it is because of 
this desire that you will not find him. Even this desire is not small — it 
is enough to prevent you. 

Desire means: "I am not interested in what already is, 1 am 
interested in what I desire there should be." What does desire mean? 
What is it that we call desire? Desire means you are not interested in 
what is available. Your interest is in what should be available. But when 
it does become available you will not be interested in it anymore, 
because now it has become the present and your interest always lies 
in the future. 

Desire always reaches out into the future and goes on missing 
the present. And yet whatever actually exists is here and now. 
Hence anyone who is obsessed with desire gets entangled with 
knots,- the more desires the more knots, the deeper the desires, the 
more complicated the knots. We are just a collection of desires - all 
unfulfilled desires, because no desire is ever fulfilled. Desires and 
desires.. we are just a collection of desires. We exist as demands - 
thousands of different types of beggars exist within us - and each 
and every desire demands a different kind of satisfaction. Nothing 
is ever achieved. 

Within us there is only a stack of begging bowls and they are all 
empty, and we go on chasing after more. We go on collecting new 
begging bowls every day. Old desires remain unfulfilled and new 
desires are just added to them, because it is very easy to give birth 
to a desire and completely impossible to fulfill it. Whatever is seen 
around us becomes a desire in us to have this, to have that - but no 
desire is fulfilled, they just go on accumulating. We remain an empty 
bowl — a begging bowl, a beggar! 

Buddha called his sanyasins , beggars. He was mocking us. This 

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You Are Your Prison 

is ironical, and he said it only as a joke, but the joke is deep and 

Buddha went to a village to beg with his begging bowl, and the 
wealthiest man in the village said, "Why? Such a beautiful man 
like you..." 

Buddha’s whole body was so beautiful,- perhaps at that time it was 
difficult to find another man as beautiful as him "...and you are a 
beggar, on the road with your begging bowl. You are worthy of being 
an emperor. I don’t care who you are, what you are, what is your 
caste, your religion, your family. I will marry my daughter to you, and 
you will become the owner of all my riches, because my daughter is 
my only heir." 

Buddha said, "1 wish it were true that I was a beggar and that 
you were the master - but the fact is that when I saw that you are 
all beggars thinking you are masters, I took the begging bowl in my 
own hands. Seeing the situation, it did not feel right for me to call 
myself a master. You all call yourselves masters, and we are happy to 
call ourselves beggars! Because in a world where the beggars think 
they are the masters, it is right for the masters to show themselves 
as beggars." 

This was a rare phenomenon, a rare happening on this earth. There 
have been very few emperors born in the world who were so great 
that they dared to become beggars. India is the only country - all 
alone on the earth - where men like Buddha and Mahavira went out 
on the roads to beg. But this is indicative of some great inner mastery. 
And it is a great piece of satire, played on all of us - great satire! 

People who only have begging bowls within live under the illusion 
that they are masters, and those who have no desire left at all walk the 
streets begging for alms. This is a psychodrama, a biting satire. But 
we cannot understand the satire of men like Buddha, and that creates 
the problem. 

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Desire and greed — demanding and demanding and demanding. 
And the one who goes on demanding will go on wandering on the 
outer journey, in the outer world. Only the one who ceases to demand 
enters the inner depths. 

So desire is called the third knot. 

Enough for today. 

Two sutras remain. Those we will take up tomorrow morning. 

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We Are What We Do 

The one who knows the birth 

and the dissolution of the knower, the knowing, 

and the objects of knowing, 

yet is itself without birth or dissolution, 

this self-illumined one is called sakshi, 

the witness. 

That which resides in the consciousness 

of all living beings, 

from Brahma, the god of creation, 

to the smallest insect, and which remains 

even when all gross and subtle bodies are no more, 

is called kootastba, the indestructible one. 

Just as a thread passes through each bead of a necklace, 
the soul threads each cell of the body 
in order that it may become aware of its true nature 
from amongst the different characteristics. 

This one is called antaryami, 

the knower of all thoughts and feelings. 

Indian wisdom has not regarded man, as he is, as any more than 
just a bundle of diseases,- as man is, he is a disease. But this is not 
a depressing attitude towards life. This attitude is not pessimistic. 
As man is, he is regarded as a disease, because as long as he 

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believes this state of disease to be his health he cannot attain to 
his intrinsic potential. 

Man has infinite possibilities. If a diamond lying among the 
pebbles and stones accepts itself as an ordinary stone, then it stops 
the possibility of any growth, no possibility is left for any refinement, 
for any evolution. If we believe that what we are is all there is, then 
there is no possibility to grow. Growth is possible only if we do not 
take what we are to be our ultimate potential. Wherever there is the 
possibility of growth in any aspect, we must not believe ourselves to 
be already perfect in that aspect. 

A unique thing has happened in the history of mankind. It is 
that the West has never considered its external conditions to be 
the ultimate state of perfection,- hence the West has succeeded in 
changing these conditions to a great extent. If there was poverty, it 
did not accept it, if there was illness, it did not accept it, if there was 
just a small hut to live in, it did not accept it, it did not accept rugged 
and uneven roads, it did not accept a slow speed of movement. The 
West did not accept the external circumstances as they existed. That 
is why the West has totally changed them. 

But the East has undertaken an even deeper experiment. The East 
does not accept the inner state of man as it is. An indication of this 
is given when it is said that as man is, he is a disease. He is worthy 
of transformation,- he should transform himself. He can attain to his 
inner being, only if he changes. If he transforms, only then can he 
attain to the state where he can be peaceful, content and blissful. 

Our anguish is the anguish of a seed. If a seed does not become a 
tree, the anguish is natural. And if a seed believes in remaining a seed, 
that it is perfect as it is, then there is no way for it to sprout. 

Hence the sage is explaining these five groups of diseases. We 
talked about three last night, now the fourth. The fourth is sattva, 
piety, the feeling of being "good," and the fifth, punya, virtue. 

The third was desire, lust, greed. Desire means the demand for 

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We Are What We Do 

some object. A desire for money, a desire for reputation. Money and 
reputation exist outside oneself. There is even a more subtle desire 
which we do not normally understand. The sage calls it sattva. 

A man has no desire for money, for reputation, but he wishes to 
be a good man - to be a saint, to be a sanyasin. This too is a desire. 
Although nothing will be added by it to you on the outside, yet this 
too is a lust - not for money but for religion. Desires are diseases. This 
desire, "1 want to be saintly," included; even though it is concerned 
with the inner. 

A friend came yesterday and said, "1 want to be initiated into 
sanyas - but the inner sanyas, not the outer, because anything of the 
outside seems to be part of desire — even the outer sanyas. The inner 
sanyas does not look like a desire - but it is a very subtle desire. It 
too is a desire. Whenever you want to become something, desire is 
bound to be there. 

The sage says that if you get tied even with the desire for sattva, 
it is also a disease,- even the desire to be good, the desire for inner 
purification, perfection, is a disease. This is interesting. These diseases 
need to be understood so that the inner perfection may manifest. 

Now one more thing to understand: I told you about the seed,- this 
example works to some extent, but it does not go very far. No example 
goes very far, and to stretch it beyond its limit creates problems. If a 
seed is satisfied with being a seed it will never become a tree, this is 
true. But that inner reality that man is, is already there. If he mistakes 
himself for something else he will not be able to realize this reality, 
nevertheless it is already there. What he is within is not something 
that he will grow into in the future, it is already present right now. 

For example, there is a beggar who has the key to a treasure in his 
pocket. That treasure is available right now, the key is available right 
now, but the beggar has forgotten about the key, doesn t remember 
it and continues to beg from dawn to dusk. He is so busy begging 
that he has no time to put his hands into his own pockets because his 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

hands are always reaching out to other people. And hands which are 
reaching out to others can’t be put into one’s own pockets, they are 
always occupied in begging. His mind is always focused on others, so 
he finds no time to search within. Whatever time is available during 
the night he uses in counting and re-counting what he received from 
others. In the morning it is the same rush again. In the evening the 
same counting and re-counting. 

Not only millionaires keep accounts, even beggars do it. And 
that is why the difference between a millionaire and a beggar is only 
quantitative, not qualitative,- one has a small account and the other’s 
account is a little bigger, but the begging is the same. 

Life comes to an end and the beggar is still only keeping accounts,- 
he has no time to look inside. And one thing is certain: the beggar 
believes that what he lacks, others have, and he has to get it from 
them. Constantly begging, he becomes settled in the idea that 
whatever is worth getting is with others: "I don’t have it." 

What I am saying is true about all of us. Whenever we find 
something to our liking, it belongs to others. The means to fulfill our 
desires are always with other people, always with the others. So we 
go on begging, begging, and this continuous begging forms a strong 
habit and leaves no way for us to look within ourselves. 

So now the sage says that even those who may be trying to 
become superior not through money or through fame but through all 
the "good" intentions — through religious pursuits, through charitable 
behavior, through the search for truth, through this search for sattva, 
for serenity - things nobody considers to be bad... 

A man accumulates riches,- anybody can look down on his 
accumulation. Then a man accumulates religious knowledge, but 
nobody will look down upon this accumulation, although both of them 
are doing the same thing - fulfilling the desire to accumulate. People 
will say that the man who is accumulating wealth is piling up garbage,- 
and yet the man who is piling up spiritual knowledge is appreciated 

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We Are What We Do 

for he is on a virtuous trip, a religious trip. But the worthless coins of 
spiritual knowledge are just as available on the outside as money is. 

There are coins of knowledge also. A man memorizes the scriptures 
and becomes wise. But the scriptures are as much a part of the outer 
as money. He is not depositing this wealth in a safe but in his memory. 
The memory is also a safe. And in a way this man is more clever, more 
calculating, because a bank safe can be broken into, can be stolen 
from, but it is difficult to steal from the locker called memory. Unless 
a man like Mao rules over the society it is difficult to steal from it. But 
it is possible. 

Efforts are now being made to interfere with your memory, so that 
you yourself do not remain the master of it. Brainwashing devices have 
been developed — your brain can be washed, cleaned out completely. 

After the Korean war, China did some thorough brainwashing 
experiments on American prisoners of war and an interesting fact 
came to light, and the information is valuable. This fact is that 
only five percent of the people created any problem during the 
brainwashing. There was no problem with the remaining ninety- 
five percent, because this ninety-five percent were not the masters 
of their own memory, they could easily be brainwashed. Memory is 
erased by simple methods, and the person who has been brainwashed 
cannot notice the change that he has undergone - the forgetting of 
old concepts, beliefs and ideologies. 

Stalin and Mao both did some significant experiments - 
dangerous, and against man s freedom, but significant because they 
revealed several things. A man who had not committed a murder 
can be made to confess that he had done it, and he will even state 
this in court. And the absurdity happened: the actual murderer was 
caught, and yet a brainwashed man had confessed to a crime which 
he had not committed and had been hanged for it. And he had not 
confessed under any pressure. What is new about it is that he was 
not beaten or forced to confess, he was simply brainwashed and then 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

made to confess. Once brainwashed, it is easy to put anything into 
the memory. 

If a man is kept awake for seven days and not allowed to sleep he 
will become deranged. He will not be clear about his states - whether 
he is dreaming or sleeping or waking. If he is not allowed to sleep or 
dream for seven days he will start dreaming with open eyes,- then he 
will not be certain whether the wall in front of him actually exists or 
only appears to be there. 

As soon as he is unable to distinguish between the dream and 
reality he becomes vulnerable, anything can be put into or taken 
out of his brain. At this vulnerable time recordings are being played 
giving him new ideas and erasing others. He is now suggestible, and 
will accept whatever you tell him,- whatever you thrust upon him will 
go deep into his unconsciousness. He can even confess in a court 
that he has committed a murder because that thought has been put 
deep into his mind. He cannot negate it - it is beyond his control. He 
himself now believes that he has committed the crime, because his 
memory has been interfered with. 

But until recently no one had been able to attack and break into 
the safe of the memory, so the wise men have written - they should 
not be called wise, they were only knowledgeable scholars - they 
wrote that money can be stolen, but not knowledge. But now it 
can be stolen, because it is also just an accumulation. The habit of 
accumulating is the same, it does not make any difference what one 
accumulates - postage stamps, wealth or knowledge - no difference. 
The joy of accumulating belongs to the outside. 

That is why so much value is placed on non-possessiveness, on not 
accumulating. Non-possessiveness does not mean the renunciation 
of outer possessions it means the renouncing of the attitude and the 
desire to accumulate. Only then is the inner journey possible. 

Sattva, piety, is also a kind of accumulation. Someone proudly 
says, "I have been on a fast for three months." He did not accumulate 

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anything, not even the food which accumulates within the body. He 
did not even accumulate food within the body — in those three months 
his body lost weight; he lost something and accumulated nothing. But 
he accumulated a three-months-fast worth of religious merit! He has 
accumulated this. Now he wants to brag that he has fasted for three 
months. This is the same accumulating attitude. 

Another man says, "1 gave so much to charity." In giving to charity 
one is not accumulating; on the contrary, in giving to charity one is 
losing. One loses money but accumulates the pride of charity: "I gave 
so much to charity." 

A man had come with his wife to meet me. The wife was already 
acquainted with me, and she had come to introduce her husband to 
me. At the time of the introduction she said that her husband had 
given one lakh rupees to charity. The husband interrupted, "No, no, 
it is one lakh and ten thousand." It has been given away, but the pride 
of giving is accumulating. We count not only what we possess, we also 
count what we give away. The counting continues. 

We even accumulate piety - we remember whatever good we 
have done. But it is strange that we choose not to remember when 
we do something bad. So a sinner has not much recollection of his 
evil deeds. Others might call him bad, but he says, What, me? 
But the so-called good man has the accumulation of his good deeds. 
Surprisingly enough it often happens that a sinner takes the leap to go 
within himself sooner than the so-called good man. That is because, 
in a way the sinner is empty inside,- he is not keeping any account of 
what he has done because the account is not pleasant. Whatever he 
has done, he himself doesn t like that he has done it, hence he keeps 
no account of it. 

But a "good" man - he keeps an account of everything he has 
done. Perhaps he counts even that which he didn t do,- he inflates the 
account. Maybe several things are in his mind, but not in deed, but he 
counts even that. This accumulation is an obstruction. 

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It has happened so many times that even some Valmiki, some 
Angulimal - total criminals - attain to the truth within a moment. This 
is because the accumulation of good deeds is a bigger obstruction 
than crime. What can a criminal collect? He knows that he is nothing, 
has no standing - egolessness is possible. But with a "good" man there 
is too much ego. 

The sage says that even sattva, the feeling of being "good," is a 
disease. This is a very daring statement. No religion outside of India 
would say that even goodness is a disease. Evil has been called a 
disease, sin has been called a disease, but goodness has never been 
called a disease. Certainly no religion born outside of India has been 
able to transcend the limitations of a moral code, hence none could 
become religious in the real sense. 

When the West became acquainted with Eastern wisdom for the 
first time they were amazed because these statements appeared to 
be irreligious, they were very anarchic statements. If you tell a man 
that the accumulation of good deeds is also a disease, then you are 
allowing him to go astray. But it was a misunderstanding. Those who 
could say that even the accumulation of good deeds is a disease, of 
course they are implying that the accumulation of evil deeds is an 
even greater disease. The disease is the accumulating, so accumulate 
religious merit and it becomes a disease. Of course evil deeds are a 
disease,- there is no need to even mention it, it is obvious. It does not 
need to be discussed. 

To tell someone that stealing is sin only shows that society is so 
unevolved that such things still have to be stated. But to have the 
conceit of not being a thief is also a sin. And this statement is possible 
when the society has gone beyond a certain limit where stealing is 
naturally understood as being a sin. Then there would be no need to 
talk about it! 

When Christians first studied the Upanishads they were amazed; 
there was nothing like the Ten Commandments in the Upanishads — 

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do not steal, do not desire another’s wife, do not commit adultery. 
They asked, "Where are the Ten Commandments? Where are the 
basic teachings?" 

They were not aware that the writers of these sutras knew that to 
talk about Ten Commandments is childish; that this is only suitable for 
primitive societies where people need to be told that adultery should 
not be committed, that another’s wife should not be desired; that this 
is evil. Such statements convey that the primary lessons are still being 
taught. The time has not yet come when the virtuous ego, the ego of 
one who does not desire another’s woman, is also considered sinful. 
To be self-conscious of this goodness is also a sin, because this also 
strengthens the ego. 

Sattva is also a disease - a "good" disease. It happens to good 
people,- nevertheless it happens. Because of this disease it often turns 
out that good people prove worse than the bad people, because they 
have the vanity of being good and this creates domination,- vanity 
creates a kind of dangerous slavery imposed on others. 

It is not easy to be the son of a so-called "good" father. A pious 
father proves so heavy for the son that this itself can become the 
cause of the son turning evil. Too strong a drive for becoming good 
also becomes an attraction to turn to evil. And if the father is so good 
that his goodness cannot be transcended by the son there remains 
only one alternative, that is to transcend him through doing evil. 

That is why so-called "good" fathers generally have no-good sons 
- the reason is very obvious; a repeated, routine goodness becomes 
boring. Goodness has a fault in it - that the other person can’t even 
say to you that you are wrong. So your vanity cannot be challenged. 

1 have heard about Rinzai, a Zen master. Sometimes he would 
do things which were not good, although he was of the same caliber 
as Buddha. Those who knew him well asked many times, "Why do 
you do such petty deeds which bring unnecessary insult and defame 
your name?" 

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Rinzai used to reply, "Just to be human among humans, otherwise 
I become superhuman. If I become so good that 1 have no evil, I 
become quite superhuman,- I become as heavy as a rock on people. 
Even my disciples criticize me and thus they feel light, and when 
they can laugh at me in my absence, I am saved from making them 
my enemy." 

This is really amazing. He must have been a strange man, but he 
had a great insight into the human psyche. 

A good teacher knows well that students must have occasion to 
laugh behind his back. This is a way to cathart the anger which they 
accumulate within the five or six hours of compulsory sitting before 
the teacher. 

So the good people become very heavy, but it only happens if 
their sattva, goodness, is their disease, not their very nature. 

When the sage says that sattva is also a disease, he is not saying 
that to be a sattvik, a person of goodness, is a disease. What he means 
is that the accumulation of goodness and good deeds and attaching it 
to the ego is the disease. The feeling that "I am good" is the disease,- 
being good is not a disease. The really good man is so good that he 
can always even forgive the evil. 

Bayazid, a Sufi mystic, was going on a pilgrimage during the days 
of Ramadan, the time of fasting. He had a hundred disciples with him. 
It was the first day of their fast and they were just entering the first 
town as some people came and told Bayazid that a man who loved 
him, who was a shoemaker, had sold his house just to arrange for food 
for Bayazid and for his disciples,- that he had invited the whole town 
to eat because his master was coming to town. The man had sold 
everything, saying tomorrow would take care of tomorrow. 

Bayazid accepted the invitation and arrived, and sat down to eat. 
The disciples were at a loss, they were really disturbed. They had 
one more excuse to feel sorry for wasting their lives with this greedy 
man, Bayazid, who was so obsessed with eating delicious food that 

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he would break the vow of fasting. Bayazid started enjoying the food 
with great pleasure. When Bayazid was eating, the disciples also had 
to eat. But Bayazid took pleasure in it, while the disciples suffered for 
breaking their fast. 

Later in the night, when everyone was gone, the disciples rushed 
to Bayazid and said to him, “There is a limit! We didn t expect this 
from you. Have you forgotten? Did you forget about the fast? Or did 
this food attract you so much?" 

Bayazid replied, "It was not a question of the food-we can extend 
our fast for one day. But this poor man who had sold everything to 
arrange for our food would have felt hurt if we had talked about our 
fast. It would have been a crime. It was useless to talk about that; we 
can extend our fasting for one day, what is the harm in it? Why assert 
our saintliness so strongly? And beware! — there are occasions when 
one desires to assert one’s saintliness." 

This is very subtle. And it was a good opportunity - the whole 
town would have come to know that Bayazid was really a saint — but 
he let go of this opportunity to become known as a great saint. There 
was not even the slightest mention that they were on a fast. 

This I call goodness, this 1 call being a sattvik - a man of goodness. 
When even piety has to be announced, has to be publicized, or 
expects respect, it becomes a disease. 

The sage has called virtue the fifth disease. Sin is a disease in the 
whole world, virtue is a disease only in India. Even virtue is a sin, 
virtue is a disease, because the feeling that "I have done good" creates 
a subtle ego, and this feeling that "I can do good," creates the ego as a 
doer. In India it is understood that in this world nothing is a sin except 
the ego. That is why whatever creates the ego becomes a sin. 

Bodhidharma went to China from India. Many other Buddhist 
bbikkhus had already gone to China — thousands and thousands 
of bhikkhus. Emperor Wu had spent millions to get the Buddhist 
scriptures translated, he had built hundreds of monasteries. Then 

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the news came that Bodhidharma, the man of ultimate wisdom was 
coming, so Emperor Wu went to the border of his empire to welcome 
him. Just after the welcome, Emperor Wu asked Bodhidharma his 
first question: "I have built so many monasteries, so many guest 
houses, spending millions and millions; I have had Buddhist scriptures 
translated and I give food to thousands of bhikkhus daily. What will 
my reward for all this virtue be?" 

Bodhidharma replied, "You will go to hell, directly to hell." 

Wu asked him, "What are you saying? Hell? Are you joking?" 

No bhikkhu had yet dared to say this, in fact every bhikkhu had 
said that he was a great and virtuous man. They must have been 
beggars, not bhikkhus. Telling him, "You are a great and a virtuous 
man," the beggars could manage to get their sustenance from him. 

They all said, "You are a great and virtuous man,- nobody ever gave 
so much to charity. Your nameplate will be inscribed in golden letters 
in heaven, your palace is already being prepared beside God himself." 

Bodhidharma said, "You will go directly to hell." 

Bodhidharma’s statement did not appeal to Wu. It would not 
appeal to any virtuous man, that virtue is also a sin. 

Wu said, "I cannot accept your statement." 

Bodhidharma said, "Then 1 refuse to enter into your sinful empire, 

I am going back. I will stay outside of your empire. The day you know 
that even virtue is sin, I will enter." 

Somehow this was all ignored and forgotten. Wu became against 
Bodhidharma, and the other monks also turned against him. They 
had pinned their hopes on him, that his arrival there would expand 
the work. The emperor was willing, but Bodhidharma had spoiled 

After ten years Wu was on his deathbed, and as fear gripped him 
he again remembered Bodhidharma. He could see that in spite of so 
many virtuous deeds death is the same for him as for a sinner,- he was 
just as decrepit in old age as any sinner would be. After doing so many 

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virtuous deeds there was no peace at the time of death, so how would 
it be possible after death? The emperor s mind was very disturbed. 

He sent for Bodhidharma: “Call him back, I have wasted ten years. 
Today 1 also feel that I am going directly to hell." 

But Bodhidharma had already died. However he had a message 
written on his grave, knowing that "If not today, then tomorrow, or 
at the time of death, Emperor Wu will remember me." Because to 
deceive oneself is easy while one is alive, when one is in high spirits 
and under the impact of the illusions of the so-called life. One realizes 
the real situation only when death is approaching. 

Bodhidharma had said, "Wu will remember me at the time of his 
death. So this is my message for the emperor, write it on my grave: 
‘You performed good deeds all your life. If you can let go of those 
good deeds even now, at the time of death, the door of heaven is very 
near.’" Drop your attachment to being virtuous. You have dropped so 
many things in order to be virtuous, now drop even that virtue. 

It is very difficult. It is very easy to drop iron chains, but it is very 
difficult to drop golden chains, they look like ornaments. And virtue! 
- what is more golden than virtue? It is pure gold, one doesn t dare 
to drop it. But someone who recognizes that chains are chains sees no 
distinction between iron chains and golden chains. Prison walls may 
be decorated like palace walls, it makes no difference. The ego is a 
prison, hence the sage has talked about five diseases. 

Unless one has known the character of these five diseases, unless 
one has entered into the nature of these five diseases, one cannot be 
free of them. In fact there is no way to get rid of anything except by 
knowing it. Knowing alone is freedom, knowing alone is liberation. As 
soon as we know a thing in its totality we become free of it. 

Ignorance is bondage, not knowing is bondage. Freedom happens 
with knowing. Anger possesses us while we do not know it. The day 
we know our anger, the day we enter into its layers, the day we see 
anger in its nakedness, we are free from anger. 

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After knowing, nothing needs to be done about freedom: try 
to understand this deep wisdom of the Eastern seers. It is not 
that first you need to know what anger is and then you have to 
do something to drop anger — no. The Eastern concept is that 
knowing is freedom, nothing needs to be done beyond knowing. 
If doing is needed even after knowing, it means that knowing is 
still incomplete. 

Psychological diseases do not first require a diagnosis and then a 
cure. Their diagnosis itself is the cure. Why? Because psychological 
diseases are due to ignorance, they have no other cause. 

For example, it is dark and in this darkness there are snakes and 
scorpions. Then you light a lamp. Now two steps have to occur. All 
the snakes and scorpions will now become visible, although they will 
not yet disappear because they were not just an effect of the darkness, 
the darkness was only the cause of their invisibility. But now it is not 
dark and the snakes are visible. However nobody can say that the 
snakes have disappeared just because the lamp was lit,- the next step 
is that the snakes and scorpions have to be removed. So realization 
alone is not enough, something more needs to be done, one more 
step is involved. 

But one more thing is happening besides: when the lamp is lit, do 
you also have to remove the darkness? Do you ever wonder: Okay, 
the lamp is lit, but now how will I remove the darkness? No, the cause 
of darkness is the absence of light. 

Physical ailments require both a diagnosis and a cure. But for 
diseases of the consciousness the diagnosis itself is the cure: the lamp 
is lit and the darkness is gone. Disease of the consciousness is like 

The sage says: 

When the embodied soul is identified 

with the nature of these five knots, 

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it cannot become free of them 
without self-realization. 

What do we do? We become identified with them and we acquire 
their attributes. Doing virtuous acts we become virtuous, constantly 
doing good deeds we become good, performing evil deeds we 
become a sinner — whatsoever we do, we become one with it. This 
identification itself is your ignorance. If you want to know, it is 
necessary to stand at a distance. A little distance, a little gap is needed 
to know. In fact we can only know that which we see from a distance, 
otherwise we cannot know. Whatever we want to know first has to be 
placed before our eyes for observation. 

If you want to know anger, it is not possible to know when you are 
identified with anger. Anger can only be known after separating the 
anger from oneself, by going beyond the anger to look at it neutrally, 
as we do with an object — like a scientist in his lab observing an object 
from a distance. 

Meditation is a science of putting oneself at a distance. Looking at 
your own diseases of the mind from a distance, and entering fully into 
those knots, becomes the liberation. 

As these five afflict the soul like subtle diseases, 
then the soul is known as ling sharir, 
the identification body. 

This is the knot in the heart. 

That is the basic disease of the heart. This disease is actually 
the one where we are stuck. These five diseases together produce 
one disease, and that disease is identification - we become one with 
what we do. Stealing, we become thieves; meditating, we become a 
spiritual man ; we become one with what we do, we cannot remain 
separate from it. 

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If we understand this properly, this is the meaning of sanyas: while 
we are doing anything we are not to become the doer, we are just to 
remain the watcher. The basic meaning of sanyas is that we perform 
actions, but we are not to become involved with them any more 
than as an actor. We may play a part in a theatrical production, but 
as soon as we leave the stage we drop the role we were playing. An 
actor leaves his role behind. When he is lying on his bed he does not 
wonder about what might be happening now to his leading lady who 
was in trouble in the play. But sometimes such illusions do happen. 

I have heard that trouble occurred once during the drama of the 
god Rama’s life story. 

The actor who was playing Ravana, the villain, played that role every 
year and the girl who was playing Sita, Rama’s wife, had also played 
her role for several years. Every year he played Ravana, kidnapped 
Sita and kept her in his Ashoka Carden — the same mischievous game 
every year. But the actor fell in love with the girl. 

The Ramaleela production happened again. When it came to 
the part of the ceremony in which Sita would choose her husband, 
Ravana had also come as a possible suitor in the ceremony. Then the 
messengers arrived with the news that a fire had broken out in Lanka, 
Ravana’s golden capital. But Ravana replied, unexpectedly, "To hell 
with the fire! This time, I will not move without marrying her." He 
picked up the bow of Lord Shiva that was kept for the test to find the 
right suitor and broke it into pieces. 

Janak, the father of Sita, was in a fix,- this was not in the play, it 
was an unexpected problem. The public too was bewildered — what 
is going on? What was going to happen now? Would Sita marry 
Ravana? But Janak was an old and experienced man. He had played 
his role for many, many years so he could improvise. He called for 
his servants and shouted, "Why did you place here this toy bow and 
arrow meant for children? Bring in the real bow of Lord Shiva." The 
curtain dropped, and another actor was brought in to play Ravana — 

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because the original actor was still shouting that he would not move 
without marrying Sita. 

Now this poor man playing Ravana must not have been sleeping 
well at night. For him it had no longer remained a matter of only 
acting, it became something very real! 

Sanyas means letting go of this subtle identification body. It means 
that the state that you have created by identifying yourself with your 
diseases, by identifying with how you appear to be, has to go. 

That which illuminates there as the consciousness 
is ksbetratfya, the knower field. 

The knower, the knower field, perceives it all sitting within this 
identification body. But we are not aware of it at all; this knower is 
lost amongst all that which we know. To discover that knower is the 
science of religion. 

The question has been asked: Who is sakshi, the witness? Who is 
kootastha, the one who resides deepest? Who is antaryami, the knower 
of all thoughts and feelings? 

These three are the dimensions of the soul in three different 
contexts. It is like this: you are a father in relation to your son, a 
husband in relation to your wife, a son in relation to your father. 
Among friends you are none of these. In the office you are not even a 
friend, but in spite of all this you are one and the same. 

Saksbi, kootastha and antaryami are the names of different situational 
dimensions of the soul. All three are nothing else but the soul, 
but these three words are used in three different contexts. Try to 
understand the contexts. 

The one who knows the birth 

and the dissolution of the knower, the knowing, 

and the objects of knowing, 

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yet is itself without birth or dissolution, 
this self-illumined one is called sakshi, 
the witness. 

If you enter into yourselves, whatsoever you will come to know 
you cannot be that. Remember this sutra: whatsoever you can know, 
you cannot be that, because you are always the knower. So it means 
that whatsoever you know, you are standing behind that knowledge, 
otherwise you would not know it. Whatsoever can be known, you 
cannot be that. The basic principle, the foundational, the seed 
mantra of yoga sadbana, meditation practice, is: you cannot be that 
which you know. 

You can know when you close your eyes that your physical body 
exists around you. You can know, you can feel the pain of the thorn 
stuck in your foot; you can know your heart beating - you can know 
your heart is beating fast when you are anxious, you can also know the 
heartbeat is slowing down when you are peaceful. So the knower is 
different from the heartbeat, from the pain in the foot, from the form 
of this body, because a duality is needed in order to know. 

A duality is a prerequisite for knowing, a gap is necessary in order 
to know. Knowing occurs because of that gap, otherwise there is no 
knowing. That is why when you look at your reflection in the mirror 
you have to keep a certain distance. If you come very close and you 
put your head on the mirror, it will be difficult to see your reflection 
in the mirror. You can see a little bit because there is still a gap, but 
the more you reduce the distance, the gap, the more difficult it is to 
see anything. If there is no gap between you and the mirror you won’t 
be able to see anything. A certain distance is necessary for knowing, 
or seeing. 

The sage says: All these things which are born, created and 
destroyed, all this is known by the one who dwells within. 

In the night, when sleep starts descending, you would know it is 


We Are What We Do 

descending. One thing is certain: you are not the sleep, otherwise 
who would know it? The one on whom the sleep is descending must 
be separate from it. 

In the morning you are sitting at your door, the sun has arisen, 
spreading the sunshine,- you know the sun is shining. Then the sun 
rises in the sky and the heat increases, then the sun is above your 
head, it is noon. You are neither the noon, nor the morning. Then in 
the evening the sun is setting, darkness is descending; you are aware 
of the descending darkness, which means you are not the darkness. 

Morning happens, noon happens, then evening comes,- you know 
the sun rising, when it is at its peak, and the setting sun. You cannot 
be one with the sun, you are separate from it. Similarly, whatever 
happens in your life is known by the one who dwells within. And the 
interesting thing is that you can never catch hold of this knower. 

Try to understand. You have a pain in your foot. You know that 
there is pain in your foot, so the knower has become separate from 
the pain in the foot. Now you can also know that you know the pain in 
the foot. Now you have gone behind this knowing. Try to understand 
it correctly: you have pain in your foot, you know the pain in your 
foot, hence your knowing is separate from the pain in your foot. But 
you also know that you know of the pain in your foot. Then this 
second knowing has gone behind the first knowing. 

You can know even this knowing, that will be the third knowing. 
And then even this knowing can be known — that will be the fourth 
knowing. One thing is certain, that whatever you know, you can move 
back from there; you will never be caught in any knowing, you will 
always remain the knower, not the knowable. This ultimate knower, 
this ultimate witnessing self behind every knowing, is very mysterious. 
It is very mysterious. 

Perhaps this is the deepest mystery in life, that we cannot reduce 
ourselves into an object, the observed, by any means,- we always 
remain the knower, the observer. That is why a man like Mahavira, a 

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man who searched deeply for the ultimate witnessing self, said that it 
is meaningless to say that there remains a knower in the ultimate state 
of being, only a knowing exists there. Because even if we maintain 
that there is a knower, one who knows, we have come to know that 
knower, we have receded behind it. We should only say that there is 
simply knowing. So Mahavira called the ultimate state keval cfyan, just 
knowing,- not even the knower, not the known, just knowing — pure 
knowing. And this pure knowing goes on receding forever behind 
each knowing. 

The one who knows this mystery, the experiencer of this mystery, 
has been called sakshi, the witnessing self. The self is a witness, because 
the knower, the known and the knowing, all three are born out of it 
and dissolve into it, but the witness always remains standing apart. 

In English there is a word, a very precious word, ecstasy, which 
helps one to understand the concept of the witnessing self. Ecstasy at 
its root means to stand out. Ecstasy means to be apart from. Whatever 
way you try, there is no way for you to be within the experience,- you 
are always apart from that which can be experienced. Wherever you 
stand, you "stand out." 

That is why Western mystics use the word ecstasy for samadbi, 
the ultimate awakening. Ecstasy means the witnessing self. Ecstasy 
does not mean samadbi, it means witnessing. No matter what you do, 
however much you try, there is no way you can make the witnessing 
self other than itself, it remains only a witness. 

This is one situational definition of the soul. 

Every definition is of a particular dimension. That is why no 
one definition can convey the whole nature of the soul, and that 
is also why there are so many differences between religions. There 
are no fundamental reasons for these differences — one religion 
emphasizes one definition of the soul according to one dimension, 
while another religion emphasizes another definition of a different 
dimension. These definitions will appear to be different. In this 

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sense the Upanishads are beyond all religions because they accept 
all definitions. This definition of the witnessing self is given by Jaina 
philosophy, the Jaina religion. 

The second question is: What is kootastha, the indestructible one? 
The sage says: 

That which resides in the consciousness 

of all living beings, 

from Brahma, the god of creation, 

to the smallest insect, and which remains 

even when all gross and subtle bodies are no more, 

is called kootastha, the indestructible one. 

The remaining... That which remains even after the destruction of 
all the bodies is called the kootastha soul - that which always remains. 
Do what you will, it remains. 

Even science accepts that matter has a kootastha form because matter 
is indestructible, we cannot destroy it. We may change its forms, but 
that is not destruction - it is a transformation. The kootastha state of 
matter always remains, and the Upanishad says that consciousness 
too has a kootastha state which is eternal. 

You may be a child, a young man, an old man,- you may become a 
sinner or a virtuous person,- you may abandon all your sins, renounce 
your religious merit, renounce the passions of youth, become old, 
remain in the body or leave the body - do whatsoever you wish - but 
after all this has been destroyed, that which still remains, which is 
indestructible, is kootastha. 

This is the second definition of the soul. This too belongs to a 
specific context; this is from the aspect of what is destructible and 
what is indestructible,- this is called the kootastha. In the dimension 
of knowledge it is sakshi, the witness, and in the dimension of the 
indestructible it is kootastha, the indestructible one. 

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Just as a thread passes through each bead of a necklace, 
the soul threads each cell of the body 
in order that it may become aware of its true nature 
from amongst the different characteristics. 

This one is called antaryami, 

the knower of all thoughts and feelings. 

The two earlier definitions are a bit too far away for you, because 
to be a witness is the ultimate state of knowing and to achieve the 
state of the indestructible one, you should be totally ready to die as 
you are. 

To know the witness one has to go deep into the purity of ultimate 
knowing where no object remains and only the knower is left, where 
nothing remains to be known, only the knower remains. This is a very 
arduous process of elimination — to go on denying whatever you come 
to know, to throw away whatever becomes the object of knowledge. 

It is interesting to note that although you have begun your 
journey in order to know, whatever you know will have to be thrown 
away, only then will ultimate knowing happen. Whatever becomes 
the experience, say, "It is useless." It is an arduous discipline! 
Whatever becomes part of your experience, declare it as useless. 
Even if the experience of the godliness happens, become aware 
that, "What I am is beyond it," because whatever can become an 
experience, "1 am not that." 

So Mahavira and Buddha simply denied the existence of God,- 
they said whatever can be experienced is not it. 

People say that they have experienced God, that they have seen 
God, that they have had a glimpse of God. If you have had a glimpse 
of God, one thing is certain: that you have not had even a glimpse 
of your own self, because whatever you can see becomes an object, 
the other, and you remain beyond it. So here you have even gone 
beyond God! 

Certainly whatever you have glimpsed, experienced, must be your 

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We Are What We Do 

own imagination, not God. God is the eternal witness, the divine. He 
is known when all experiences dissolve. To talk about an experience 
of God is ignorance. There cannot be an experience of God. It is 
useless to even say so. It is the disappearance of all experiences. 

So a man like Buddha becomes unintelligible to us because he 
gives the ultimate statement. He denies the existence of God, soul 
and liberation — because whatever becomes known is useless. What 
words can he use, how can he give a name to that which is not known? 
So Buddha remains silent. 

Whenever someone asked Buddha about that which really exists, 
he would reply, "If I say something it too becomes an object, hence I 
will not talk about it." He suggests to go on denying every experience 
and every object of knowledge. This way, one day you will arrive at a 
point where nothing remains. 

It is difficult for this to be understood: we seek in order to attain 
something, and Buddha says that nothing remains. What does it 
mean? It doesn’t mean that there is nothing, but that nothing remains 
to be known, nothing to be experienced, nothing to be recognized 
— no knowable object, no knower and no knowledge. The trio of 
knowing disappears, but what remains is all. 

But these definitions are a bit distant for you. The third definition 
which may feel closer to you is: That which is living in each cell of 
the body, threaded through the five bodies like a thread through 
the beads in a necklace, drowned in the five diseases, entangled in 
the world ... 

Only the beads are of the world; the thread is always of the 
soul. Only the beads are of the bodies, of the diseases,- the thread 
is always of the soul. The most important thing in a necklace is 
the thread. Beads cannot make a necklace without the thread; the 
beads would spill all over the place, the necklace would disperse. 
The thread is the link that keeps them together. But the thread is 
invisible, only the beads are visible. So whosoever has not seen 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

a necklace being made will not understand the existence of the 
thread if a necklace is suddenly put in front of him,- he will only 
see the beads because the thread is invisible, it is hidden within 
the beads. 

We are in the same situation: the bodies are visible but the thread 
is not. Everything is visible but the thread, and we go on jumping 
from one bead to another. 

These bodies are not possible without the soul — but the soul is 
not visible. One body is so close to the other, one bead is so close to 
the other, that you slip from one bead to the next, to the next, and go 
on missing the thread. 

Whatsoever we are within all these bodies, all these diseases, 
there the soul is not only kootastha and sakshi, it is also antaryami, 
the knower of all thoughts and feelings. Antaryami means, it is here 
as well. There, in the ultimate state which we call the witness, it 
certainly is. 

When we come to the point of the ultimate annihilation of all, 
what is left we call kootastha, the indestructible, because it still will 
remain, but it is here as well, within us as we are. 

Here it is invisible, here it is hidden under the beads,- there it 
will be without the beads covering it, there only the thread remains. 
Here there are many beads and it is within them, but nevertheless 
it is still here. Because that which exists there must be here also; 
otherwise there simply will be no way to arrive there. Hence it has 
been said: 

Just as a thread passes through each bead of a necklace, 
the soul threads each cell of the body 
in order that it may become aware of its true nature 
from amongst the different characteristics. 

This one is called antaryami, 

the knower of all thoughts and feelings. 

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We Are What We Do 

Begin the journey from the knower of all thoughts and feelings, 
make witnessing the key of your spiritual endeavor, and that which is 
the indestructible will be the attainment. Begin at antaryami, practice 
sakshi, and kootastba is the attainment. 

Enough for today. 

I 217 I 

Chapter #11 

What Is Eternal? 

The soul, the ultimate reality, 

is called twam, thou, when free of all descriptions 

- truth, wisdom, the infinite, the abode of bliss - 

just as gold when it is free of all form of bangle or crown. 

The soul is then revealed in its own self-nature, 

perception and consciousness. 

Brahman, the ultimate reality, is truth. 

It is infinite and the abode of knowing. 

Truth is indestructible. 

What is not destroyed, even as the mediums of space, 
time and objects are destroyed, 
is avinasbi, the indestructible. 

Innumerable ornaments can be made out of gold and many forms 
are possible - beautiful or ugly - but the form is not the gold. 
Nevertheless the form cannot appear without the gold, it cannot exist 
alone. A form has no independent existence, it appears only when it 
envelops something. 

So gold can take many forms, but no form is the gold. Gold is free 
of all forms, that is why one form can change into another. If gold 
had a fixed form, then it could not take on another. However we have 
never seen gold without a form — whenever we see it, it has a form. 
But gold can also change its form - today it is a bangle, tomorrow 

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What Is Eternal? 

it can be molded into some other form, and the day after tomorrow 
something else again. The form changes, but the intrinsic nature of 
gold is constant. So we may not have seen formless gold, and yet the 
gold is not the form. 

The sage starts the talk with this example. He says: "Whatever we 
see in the world is all form. The base on which the form appears is 
without form, and the search for this formless is the search for truth. 
But in order to search for it, the form must be dropped. All form and 
all attributes need to be discarded, all limitations transcended, only 
then can one reach to the infinite, the boundless, the eternal." 

The mind is surrounded by form. One’s first acquaintance is only 
with form,- the form is the first thing seen. The formless is not seen on 
the outside,- whatsoever is seen on the outside is all form. That is why 
we become obsessed with form and forget that, that which is must be 
formless, otherwise how can it take on so many forms? 

What is a seed today will become a tree tomorrow. The seed which 
can become a tree must contain something formless within, which is 
able to take the form of a seed as well as the form of a tree. That 
formlessness must be hiding in the seed because that one seed can 
produce enough trees to cover the whole earth. One seed produces 
one tree, and one tree bears millions of seeds. If we sow these millions 
of seeds, each and every seed in turn will bear millions of seeds again,- 
one seed can cover the whole earth with trees. Only the earth may 
run out of space, deny it and say, "Enough! No more." 

There is so much hidden within a seed which cannot be contained 
in its physical form. The form of the seed is insignificant, almost 
nothing. That which is formless must be hidden in the seed, because 
one seed can bear an infinite number of seeds. The form cannot 
produce the infinite,- whatever is born out of form will be finite. The 
seed should have a finite capacity, only then its form would have some 
meaning. But I have told you that one seed can fill the whole earth — 
even this is just a way of expression. Otherwise, if we were to expand 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

the mathematics of it correctly, one seed could fill the whole cosmos, 
and even the cosmos would become insufficient and the seed require 
more space because there would be no end to it. One seed producing 
millions of seeds, and out of millions, again millions and millions of 
seeds.. .there is no end to it. 

So can what was hidden in that first seed be contained in the form 
itself? Infinity cannot be contained in the form. The form can only 
contain the finite. Form itself is a limitation, so how can it contain the 
formless, the limitless? So when we only see the form in the seed, 
that is the fault of our vision because we are not able to see the whole 
seed with all its potential. That which it can be, in a way, is inherent 
in it right now, otherwise how could it manifest in the future? If this 
one seed did not contain all the seeds of the world, how could they 
ever manifest in the future? They are hidden in it today, here and now, 
only our eyes are not able to see them. So the form of the seed is our 
illusion - the real nature of the seed is formless. Wherever form is 
seen, it is because of our faulty vision. 

It is like looking at the sky through a window. If you have never 
seen the sky outside, the sky will look as if it is framed. The form 
of the window will appear to be the form of the sky. The window 
is giving a form to the sky - but the sky is formless. Even when we 
are standing outside the house looking up at the sky and there is no 
window, then too the earth works like a window and the sky appears 
arched. The only reason for the arched appearance of the sky is the 
roundness of the earth. The sky is not round - the earth becomes the 
window and gives it a form. Our eyes are not more than the window,- 
our eyes will fix a form on whatsoever we see. 

So, in fact, looking outside we will always meet the form and not 
the formless. In order to search for the formless we have to look 
inside where we can be rid of all windows. With closed eyes we don’t 
need to remember the window-we don’t need any eyes, any window, 
or even an earth. Entering within, we enter into the formless. 

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What Is Eternal? 

Truth exists within and without, but first the seeker has to know 
the truth within. The day he knows the formless within, the formless 
becomes apparent outside too. Then form remains only on the surface 
as an appearance, created by oneself. 

This formlessness is free of all descriptions such as truth, wisdom, 
the infinite, abode of bliss, it is pure gold-like consciousness and 
knowing. When such a consciousness is experienced - this sutra is 
very precious — when such a consciousness is experienced then it is 
called twam : it is called thou, not I. 

When this formless truth is experienced there is no way to say 
1, because 1 is a limitation. And what you have been calling I up to 
now does not exist any longer. Now what to call it? It surrounds you 
from all directions, it is present within and without. And we have 
only two words we can use: either I or tbou. We cannot say I, because 
only with the disappearance of the I is the formless experienced. 
So with the inadequacy of language there remains only one way to 
describe it, and that is to call it thou. So devotees have called the 
ultimate reality, thou. 

The first reason to call it thou is because there is no way to call 
it I. Actually, to call it thou is also not right, because thou is always 
in relation to 1 ; it is a relationship. As long as the 1 is there, someone 
exists as thou. And when thou is there, I too exists. In such moments 
one experiences the futility of language. 1 cannot be said because it is 
no more,- to say thou is also difficult, because then who will be saying 
it? Who will be saying thou? But if something has to be said, then it 
is more correct to say thou than to say 1. Even though it is not right, 
it is not correct to say thou, still it is better compared to saying I - at 
least it conveys the absence of an I. This is the first reason. 

Secondly, we could have called it that - neither I nor thou, but that. 
Wise men have also called it that. But when existence is called that, 
there doesn’t seem to be any loving relationship in it; it sounds as if 
it is an object. We use that for objects, and thou for individuals. And 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

when the experience of godliness happens it is not like experiencing 
an object, it is like experiencing an ultimate entity — the ultimate 
aliveness full of a showering infinite love. The experience is like the 
embrace of a lover, so to call it that would be disrespectful, and to 
call it I is out of the question. The sage calls this pure consciousness, 
devoid of all attributes and free of all form, twam, or thou. 

Martin Buber, a great Jewish thinker of the twentieth century, has 
written a book, 1 and Thou. He is one of the few people in the history of 
mankind who has expounded upon the deepest relationship between 
1 and thou. 

Man can live in three ways: keeping I at the center and making 
thou the periphery - the way people usually live - I always at the 
center, thou on the periphery. We use thou, we exploit thou, and 
we establish a relationship with thou, but always for the sake of 
I. Even if we sometimes surrender to thou, it is in the hope of 
making thou surrender for the sake of I, but the concern is always 
the I. This is the state of ego — wanting to bring the whole world 
to your feet and to decorate your I. I stands at the center and the 
whole world becomes the periphery: this is the state of mind of an 
irreligious person. 

Another state of mind is to keep thou at the center and 1 at the 
periphery. This state is where only one thirst remains and that is 
to surrender oneself, to eliminate oneself, where only one longing 
remains and that is how to dissolve the I for the sake of thou. This 
is the state of a devotee, of a religious person: thou remains and 
the I goes on receding, shrinking. I becomes a thin periphery, thou 
becomes the strong center. This is the egoless state. 

There is a third state which has always been difficult to express, 
where neither thou nor I exists — neither the periphery nor the center 
exists. People like Buddha tried to express this state but they failed. 
There is no way to express it, because all language revolves around I 
and thou. The very birth of language is in the conversation between I 

I 222 | 

What Is Eternal? 

and thou. Hence language is unable to convey that which is beyond 1 
and thou. That is why the sage has to call it twam, thou. 

Here the sage is trying to commit the least, the smallest possible 
error. The whole truth cannot be said, hence an untruth which is 
closest to it, the least untruth, is being said. This state cannot be 
expressed exactly because neither I nor thou exist there, but some 
expression of it is a must, the message has to be conveyed. Returning 
from that unknown realm the sage desires to convey to his loved ones 
what he has known, what he has seen. 

So the sage calls it thou. This he is saying to the disciple who is 
sitting with him to learn, who is there with a longing to know. He is 
told that when the experience of pure consciousness happens, we call 
it thou. 

Thou is a lovely word, and closer to the truth. And if someone 
starts living his life centered on this understanding of thou, it is also 
very revolutionary. 

The whole spiritual practice of Ramakrishna revolved around thou. 
A mystic called Totapuri, practicing vedanta, visited Dakshineshwar 
where Ramakrishna lived. 

Totapuri asked him, "Why do you keep on repeating thou - thou? 
Drop it, and attain to where neither I nor thou exist." 

Ramakrishna was as humble as a devotee should be. Sometimes 
humbleness becomes a great phenomenon. Ramakrishna said, "Show 
me the way. I accept your invitation." 

Ramakrishna was a respected man. His devotees called him 
Paramabansa, the great swan,- millions bowed at his feet. Totapuri 
never expected that he would agree to learn so easily. Even Totapuri, 
if asked, would not have said yes so easily. "1 am brahman - 1 am 
God," was all he said. When someone proclaims, "1 am brahman, 1 
am the divine," there is nothing left to learn. If this proclamation 
is truthful, then no learning is needed. But this proclamation can 
also be a deception. If it is said after experiencing godliness, great, 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

but if it is said while still under the lure of I, then it is dangerous. 
Anyone may rejoice in saying this statement, but if the experience 
has actually happened, then to say "1 am brahman" is used only as a 
means of expression. Actually, then it would be better to say, "The 1 
no longer exists and only brahman is." 

Totapuri was surprised, but he was not aware that one who keeps 
thou as the center can easily agree to anything — provided thou is 
really at their center. It is not possible if I is the center. 

Ramakrishna agreed and said, "Take me to where neither I 
nor thou exists." This is the way of someone who keeps thou at 
the center. 

It happened in an amazing way: when Totapuri asked, "Are you 
wholeheartedly ready?" Ramakrishna replied, "Let me go to the 
temple and ask the Mother, the goddess Kali, whether I can renounce 
her. Let me have her permission to renounce her." 

Totapuri said, "Then all talk is meaningless. If you want to renounce 
her, why do you feel the necessity of asking permission? What then is 
the need to ask her permission to leave? 

Ramakrishna replied, "I no longer exist, so how can 1 renounce 
anything? Only she remains — to renounce something or not, that is 
all up to the Mother. I am not, so I cannot make this decision. The 
day I left everything up to her even this decision was included. If she 
doesn’t give me her permission I will die ignorant, but there is no 
other way." 

This is the feeling of someone who keeps thou at the center - he 
even agrees to die ignorant. Not even this much space is available to 
the I that it can choose to decide even in favor of an opportunity for 
ultimate knowing. 

In their songs devotees say that they do not long for liberation, for 
freedom, for nirvana, just to be on the streets where Krishna walked is 
enough, because liberation is for the 1, and dancing on the streets of 
Vrindavan is something to do with the thou. That is why the devotees 

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What Is Eternal? 

have said, "We don’t want liberation, because liberation means my 
liberation — after all, it is not the divine who needs any liberation. 
Remember it: liberation is for me, nirvana is for me, the wisdom of 
knowing is for me. So they sing, I do not want liberation, nirvana or 
the wisdom of knowing, just let me wander on the pathways where 
the divine once walked, that is enough." This is the feeling of the one 
who accepts thou at the center. 

There are many reasons for calling the pure consciousness thou. 
One of them is that to accept the nature of pure consciousness as 
thou is helpful for the seeker - it is a very helpful hypothesis. If 
consciousness is perceived to have the nature of I, it could at times 
be dangerous. If pure consciousness is accepted as having the nature 
of I, there is a ninety-nine percent chance that instead of eliminating 
the ego, the ego will become stronger. 

The Upanishads are right when they proclaim "Abam brabmasmi, 

I am divine." But this proclamation has happened only once in a 
while, to one out of a hundred realized beings. This declaration is the 
exception. It is the statement of those who dissolved everything into 
their I, whose 1 became so vast that even all distinctions of the other, 
the thou, became contained within it. This is extremely difficult 
because the I is very satisfying, and the whole pleasure for the I lies 
in the contrast with thou - otherwise it loses its charm. What is the 
purpose in proclaiming I, if I am alone and no thou, no other exists 
in the world? 

The fulfillment of the ego depends on others. That is why it is 
very interesting that the ego may declare itself to be free, unaware 
that it is basically dependent, that it cannot exist without others. 
When a person says, "1 am an emperor," he is not aware that his 
existence is dependent on his subjects, that he depends on the very 
people he rules over. When someone declares, "1 am the master," he 
does not know that he cannot be a master without slaves - and he 
depends so much on his slaves, how can he be the master? A master 

I 225 

is dependent, he is bound to his slaves. All proclamations of 1, the 
ego, only exist to make thou smaller. The ego can also be fulfilled 
in this way. 

When the Upanishads declared "Abam brahmasmi, 1 am divine," 
the world was inhabited by innocent and simple people. But slowly 
it became apparent that it is dangerous to keep the I at the center. In 
keeping the I at the center, ninety-nine percent of people go astray, 
only one percent attain to truth. This Sarvasar Upanishad is meant 
to help the majority of seekers by expressing the essence of a large 
number of truths, hence the word thou has been used, not "Abam 
brahmasmi, 1 am divine." 

So be ready to eliminate the I in order to attain to the truth. This 
journey is the journey of dissolving the 1. If you can remember with 
every breath that the 1 does not exist, that only thou, the divine, 
the ultimate reality exists, you will find that within a short time all 
tensions have dropped, all the anguish of the mind has vanished and 
worries have disappeared, because worries, anguish and tensions all 
require the hook of the I to hang onto, otherwise they cannot hang 
on. If this feeling deepens, that "I am not, only thou art," suddenly 
one day you will find that your worries have disappeared, and even if 
you want to be worried you cannot, because worries are the shadow 
of the I. With the disappearance of the I, worries also disappear. 
Tranquility is the shadow of thou - with the deepening of thou, 
tranquility flowers by itself. 

Nietzsche tried his whole life to live as if there is no God. He 
proclaimed that if God ever existed, now he is dead. Nietzsche 
was a great genius, on a par with any Buddha or Krishna. He had 
a penetrating intellect, but the denial of God turned his intellect 
into anguish, his brilliance into worry. It is worth noting that when 
mediocre people get worried, their worries are also petty; when a man 
of great genius worries, his worry too is of tremendous proportions. 
There was no alternative for Nietzsche except to go mad, insanity 

What Is Eternal? 

was the result of his denial. Great geniuses do not have petty worries, 
they have great worries. 

Nietzsche could have attained to the peace of a buddha, he was 
not lacking anything, but he only attained to the same madness as 
thousands of mad people. And the reason for it was that he tried to 
build his whole personality on 1. 

Nietzsche has written in his diary: "If God exists, 1 want to become 
God number one, and he can be placed next to me. If someone can 
become God, then why not I — what do 1 lack? Or if God exists, I 
can announce my denial — 1 am free to deny him. At least I am total in 
denying his existence, I cannot be forced to accept his existence. Not 
even God can force me to accept him. In this regard, I am superior 
to God - he requires my acknowledgement in order to exist. But if 1 
deny him, he has no way to make me accept his existence." This is the 
result of living with the I at the center. 

It is very difficult to understand the anguish of Nietzsche, but we 
can understand petty worries because we also live with an ego. 

Sometime, do a small experiment; remove the I from the center 
for twenty-four hours, and place thou at the center. Just for twenty- 
four hours remember thou continuously. Even if a stone hits your 
foot, even if you are abused, even if someone throws burning coals at 
you, even if you are praised, even if someone bows down at your feet 
— for just twenty-four hours, remember that thou is at the center, not 
I. It will be a new beginning in your life. If this remembering could be 
possible for twenty-four hours — or even if you couldn’t do that, if it 
is for a full twenty-four minutes, you will not remain the same. Once 
you know the moments of tranquility of thou, you will never want to 
live with the 1. 

When the emphasis shifts from 1 to thou, it becomes much easier 
to realize pure consciousness. Or, if pure consciousness is attained, 
then the feeling immediately shifts from 1 to thou,- that is why pure 
consciousness is called twam, thou. 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

Brahman, the ultimate reality, is truth. 

It is infinite and the abode of knowing. 

Truth is indestructible. 

Many have tried to give a definition for truth. What is truth? Man 
has pondered over it from many aspects. What is truth? What do we 
mean by "truth"? 

Science regards facts as truth, and this definition is widely 
accepted today. Science says: a fact is truth. A fact is that which can 
be tested and checked experimentally, for which there is proof in 
the material world. 

Suppose 1 raise my hand and only one person out of so many 
sitting here says that he sees my raised hand and the rest of you do 
not see it. Science will say that person is dreaming, because he has no 
other evidence. It is not a fact, otherwise the other people who are 
present would have seen the raised hand. It must be a dream. Dreams 
are personal, facts are collective. 

A table in your room can be seen by everyone, agreed to by 
everyone, but if you say that God is present in your room they will 
say, "You may be seeing him, but we do not. You must be imagining 
things, you must be dreaming." 

It is very interesting that it is not possible to share dreams. Two 
persons cannot see the same dream, or can they? It has not happened 
yet! No partnership, no friendship is possible in dreams, dreams are 
always personal. For science, that which is personal is a dream not a 
fact, and that which is collective is a fact. For science, truth is defined 
as that which is a fact. 

The Upanishads have no objection to this definition,- Eastern 
wisdom has no objection to this definition. But Eastern wisdom raises 
a deeper question, one which is unanswerable by science. Eastern 
wisdom says: "We accept that the objectively present phenomenon 
is truth. But what is present today may be absent tomorrow and what 


What Is Eternal? 

was absent yesterday may be present today. In the East we call only 
that phenomenon which is never absent a truth. When it is eternal, we 
call it truth - the rest we call simply a fact." 

Eastern wisdom makes three divisions: a dream is that which 
belongs to the imagination of one individual; a fact is that which is 
a collective experience,- truth is that which is eternal — because a 
fact does not always remain a fact. Yesterday you were young and 
everybody witnessed it ; today you are not young. What happened 
to truth? And if truth can change like that over a period of ten years, 
then the difference between this truth and a dream which continues 
the whole night and changes over a span of ten hours is only one of 

A man dreams for eight hours that he is an emperor and in the 
morning he again becomes a pauper — but he was an emperor for 
eight hours. You may say that you were not a witness to it, but all the 
people present in the dream were witnesses - the dreamer was not 
alone in the dream,- he had servants and attendants, ministers, armies, 
a big capital - all of them were his witnesses, and they accepted him 
as the emperor. 

So the difference is that a dream lasts only eight hours, whereas 
youth lasts for ten or twenty years - a difference only of time. Suppose 
someone remains in a coma for twenty years and continues dreaming 
that he is an emperor... It happens sometimes. 

1 went to a village where a woman had been in a coma for nine 
months, and the physicians were of the opinion that she could 
remain that way for another three years, alive but in a coma. If this 
woman had been dreaming for nine months — and she must have 
been dreaming, firstly because she was unconscious, and secondly 
because she was a woman, she must have been dreaming! And there 
is no way for her to know that what she has been seeing for nine 
months is only a dream - and everyone present in the dream would 
agree. Will the dream become truth just because it has been going 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

on for nine months? It can also happen that today’s dream may 
become truth for the masses tomorrow. 

Abraham Lincoln had a dream three days before his death. He got 
up at midnight, woke his wife and told her, "I had a bewildering dream 
in which I was murdered, and my dead body was lying in a certain 
room of the White House. You were standing near my head, two men 
were standing near my feet, one wearing black clothes, but he did not 
look familiar to me." 

The wife replied, "Go back to sleep, it was only a dream." 

Lincoln said, "I just wanted to tell you, that’s all," and went back 
to sleep. 

Three days later, Lincoln was murdered. He lay dead in that very 
room. His wife stood near his head and two men stood near his feet, 
one wearing black clothes, and the wife knew that he was not familiar 
with Lincoln. The whole scene was the same. 

So something that was a dream three days earlier became a 
collective fact after three days. So how much difference is there 
between a dream and a fact? It was a difference of only three days. 
The difference was only of a certain amount of time. 

Dreams come true, and truths become a dream. What we know 
as facts may one day disappear and fall into oblivion. Today you love 
someone and you say, "I am ready to die for you - this love is true." 
And tomorrow? - tomorrow even the ashes of love are gone. This 
love was so much afire that it should have left some smoke behind, 
but afterwards there was not even a trace of smoke. It left no trace! 
This love was so true, so real that you would have given your life for 
it - now who would have conceived that that love would become 
so untrue? 

The materialist makes only two divisions: one is the dream, 
nonfactual, fiction; and the other is the fact, a substantial fact. A fact 
is that which is agreed to by the masses, which has a materialistic 
existence, which we can test and check objectively. But the 

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What Is Eternal? 

Upanishadic sage says that truth is that which is imperishable, 

We make three divisions. We call that which is a personal 
experience a dream ; it may not necessarily be fiction, it may take the 
form of a fact. Then that which is a collective experience is called 
a fact, but it may not always remain a fact, it may become a dream. 
These two cannot be called truth: truth is that which always remains 
the same - neither is it dream, nor is it fact. It never changes, it never 
transforms itself - it simply is. Nothing less than that is acceptable as 
truth. The Eastern definition of truth lays its foundation in eternity 
and indestructibility. That is why we call the world maya, illusion; 
there is no other reason behind it. 

When we say the world is illusory, or as Shankara says, "The 
world is an illusion," it does not mean that this world does not 
exist, it means that the nature of this world is such that it will 
not remain the same eternally. When Shankara called this world 
maya, people misunderstood it to mean illusion, as if the world is 
nonexistent - the tree before you is nonexistent, you are sitting 
here but you are not... No! Shankara does not mean this. Shankara 
is saying that you do exist, but your nature is such that you exist 
now and will cease to be tomorrow. So we do not say that you are 
real, we say that you are illusory. We call truth that element within 
you which exists now, will exist tomorrow when you disappear, 
which existed even before your birth and will exist when you die,- 
will exist in your youth, in your old age ; which exists when you 
are at the climax of your fame and when you fall into the abyss of 
indignity, which exists in every situation - in every situation, no 
situation making any difference to its existence. Only that we call 
truth, all the rest is illusory. 

So what is the difference between an illusion and a dream? For 
Eastern wisdom, the collective dream is called the world and the 
personal world is called a dream. The collective dream is the world 

231 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

and the personal world is a dream — and truth is absent from both 
of them. 

But let us look into it further. Nothing seems to be indestructible 
- have you ever seen an indestructible thing? Nothing appears to 
be indestructible,- everything appears to be destructible, everything 
is transitory. Nothing crosses the limits of time into the timeless, 
nothing transcends time,- everything withers away in time. Sooner or 
later everything withers away, the duration does not matter - in time 
everything is annihilated. 

Have you ever seen an indestructible object, one which will 
never wither away? We cannot see such a thing in the outer world 
because the medium itself is not indestructible, the eyes through 
which we see will perish. The indestructible cannot be seen through 
the destructible. This is a simple fact, that the indestructible cannot 
be seen through a destructible medium. The eyes cannot see things 
higher than themselves. The eyes can see within their limit - the eyes 
perish, hence one can only see the perishable. Ears perish, hence one 
can only hear the perishable. Hands perish, hence one can only touch 
the perishable. How can a hand touch the imperishable? How can it 
touch the imperishable? 

An imperishable medium is needed in order to search for the 
imperishable,- a perishable medium will not do for the imperishable, 
and all the sense organs of our body are perishable. So the sage says 
that the journey towards the imperishable is the journey within, where 
sense organs have no use. The capacity to see without eyes, without 
light, to hear without ears, to touch without hands, exists within. 

These visions, sounds and feelings can be experienced within, 
without the help of our perishable organs. But is that which is not 
known through the sense-organs necessarily imperishable? — because 
the visions seen within may be visible today, but they can still 
disappear tomorrow. 

A friend came yesterday and said that on the first day of meditation 

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What Is Eternal? 

a great light appeared within, but on the second day it did not appear. 
Certainly this light which appeared and disappeared cannot be 
imperishable - that which once existed and then was lost was only 
a form. 

I told him that whether the light is seen or not, the one thing 
that is eternal in both of these situations is the seer, the watcher. The 
watcher watches both the presence of light and the absence of light: 
it exists in both situations. 

Inner experiences are not necessarily imperishable, because 
they may exist today and disappear tomorrow. But one quality 
is always there: the knower, the watcher, that which is eternal. 
That is the imperishable within us. If we recognize that, we can 
recognize the imperishable element in the world. Other than that, 
all is perishable. 

Once you were a child, now your childhood has gone, but 
the one who was experiencing this childhood still exists within. 
You were young, now your youth has gone, but the one who was 
experiencing this youth is still within. Now you are old, the old 
age will go, but the one who is experiencing this old age will 
still be within. The one who is experiencing all three of these 
- childhood, youth and old age - seems to have permanence,- 
everything else comes and goes. The witnessing self watches joy 
and sorrow, dignity and indignity,- this watcher remains - all the 
rest withers away. 

If you have even a small glimpse of this witnessing self you can 
know that this witness has witnessed birth and will also witness death, 
this way you will have found the eternal thread. With the attainment 
of this thread, this understanding, the existence at once becomes 
eternal,- with this recognition of the eternal thread we attain the vision 
that can recognize all that is eternal and all that is transitory. Then all 
forms become transitory and the formless hidden behind them is seen 
as eternal. 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

A fact is a form, truth is formless. That is why religion gives a more 
penetrating definition of truth, one which is more pervasive than the 
scientific definition of a fact. 

Brahman, the ultimate reality, is truth. 

It is infinite and the abode of knowing. 

"It is truth" means it is imperishable, "it is infinite," means it 
is limitless, because whatsoever has a limit will perish. Actually, 
disintegration begins with the very existence of any limits. The 
boundary itself starts disintegrating. Because when you relate with 
others there are boundaries, and this is where the friction lies. If 
your body were limitless, then no death would be possible because a 
limitless body would mean that nothing is left outside of it, outside 
of your body. So how would it die? Where would death come from? 
There would be no diseases, no forerunners of death, because nothing 
other than you would exist. 

The body decays because there are so many things outside of 
the body and therefore there is friction every moment. Scientists 
say that the body of human beings could live for hundreds of years 
but it decays just because of this friction, this struggle. Just as iron 
decays because it rusts and the wind that blows weakens the trees, 
or the sunshine.. all around there is a struggle and the hits on your 
body wear it out. It becomes exhausted after seventy years. Death 
simply means that your body has succumbed to the impacts on 
its boundaries. 

The finite naturally becomes exhausted; it cannot be indestructible, 
because this struggling and warfare from outside its boundaries are 
a regular feature. The friction is continuous. If we were to freeze a 
particular body, freeing it of all its struggles and frictions, we could 
preserve this body for thousands and thousands of years. There is 
no problem in it, because death only occurs because of this outer 

I 234 | 

What Is Eternal? 

friction. But even then, after thousands of years, it would become 
exhausted. After all, it has a limit. Its duration may be lengthy, but it 
cannot be eternal. 

This is why we say that brahman, the ultimate reality, is infinite - 
without limit, without boundaries. Only that which has no boundary 
can be the whole, and that which has an end, a boundary, does so 
because of the other, not because of itself. 

Your house ends where the other s house begins. If there were 
no other houses on the earth you wouldn’t need to build a fence 
around your house, the whole earth would be your house. A fence is 
needed because of your neighbors,- limitations and boundaries come 
into being because of the existence of others. 

If the divine is the whole, it can only be without limits. All that 
which is not whole cannot be indestructible, because any limitation 
carries disintegration, destruction within itself, any limitation carries 
death. This is why the brahman is called the truth, the infinite and the 
abode of knowing. 

The greatest experience for humans is that of knowing. This will be 
difficult to understand. One person might say the greatest experience 
is that of love, another might say that the greatest experience is 
that of bliss, or something else, but in fact the greatest is knowing 
— without which love cannot be felt, without which bliss cannot be 
felt. Knowing transcends both,- without it neither love nor bliss can 
be known. Knowing can exist without love and bliss, but love and 
bliss have no existence without knowing. So the sages have called the 
divine "the abode of knowing." 

Jesus has said, "God is love. This is very significant: God is 
love." This definition is because of a specific situation,- its purpose 
is quite different. It is just to reassure you that the divine is love so 
that you may hope for benevolence, help,- that you are not alone and 
helpless. Ask for love and it will be bestowed upon you. Jesus defines 
God as love so that a person can be reassured. 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

I too say that God is love, or love is God, just because to say "God 
is knowing" serves no purpose. We cannot relate with "knowing",- 
with "knowing" a distance, a gap between ourselves and the knowing 
always remains. It is difficult to touch it, there is no bridge between 
this knowing and ourselves. That is the reason why we say God is 

Certainly God is love, but that is not the ultimate definition. The 
ultimate definition is as the sage says: "God is the abode of knowing." 
"God is love" is a situational definition keeping man in mind, for the 
use of man, because knowing has no use, no charm, even though it is 
the truest definition, the most right definition. 

Some have said God is bliss, the abode of bliss - this is also a 
situational definition. Man is in so much suffering that unless God is 
bliss no journey is possible,- if it were not so why would you ever seek 
the divine? 

Buddha’s philosophy was uprooted from India within five hundred 
years,- the reason was that Buddha did not give any situational 
definitions. Buddha said that it is all shunya, emptiness and void. No 
one wants to go towards emptiness. In fact one would avoid going 
there, avoid the danger. Emptiness.. what will you do there? 

Whenever Buddha was asked, "Is God bliss?" - he would say, "No, 
there is only an absence of suffering, an absence of sorrow, that is all." 

This does not inspire you to go in search for godliness. It is 
good that there is no sorrow, but this is not enough reason to start 
the journey. Man is in distress, deep distress, hence the situational 
definition that God is bliss. 

But this is not the absolute definition. If we are not taking human 
beings into consideration then the exact definition is: God is the 
abode of knowing, pure knowing. 

The Upanishads were never popular with the masses because 
of these absolute definitions, because people cannot relate to 
absolute definitions. The Bible penetrates deeper into man than the 

I 236 | 

What Is Eternal? 

Upanishads. Although the Bible stands nowhere in comparison with 
the Upanishads, but because its situational definition is very close 
to man, it has its utility. A sun may be burning far, far away, billions 
of miles away, but it is of no use to us. Just a small lamp becomes 
useful because you have to walk here on the earth. You have to walk 
here, taking steps in the darkness, so why bother about a sun which 
is far away? It may be there, but it doesn’t help you to walk even an 
inch on a dark night. Your lamp may not be the sun, yes, your lamp 
is very small, but it helps you to take some steps and to walk on the 
path, and these small steps may lead you to the sun where all lamps 
can be discarded. 

But the Upanishads give the ultimate definition, because at the 
time when the Upanishads were born people were neither in so much 
distress as to be consoled by bliss, nor so helpless as to be consoled 
by love. Man was quite innocent and content in himself. The ultimate 
and absolute definition was possible in those days: that God is the 
abode of knowing. 

And this pure knowing is truth, it is indestructible. 

What is not destroyed, even as the mediums of space, 
time and objects are destroyed, 
is avinasbi, the indestructible. 

That which will always remain, even if time and space were to 
disappear, even if all matter and the universe were to disappear, 
that which is the essential core of all isness is called avinasbi, the 

I 237 I 

Chapter #12 

Love Is Freedom 

The eternal consciousness, 

which is beyond creation and destruction, 

is called knowing. 

The consciousness which fills and pervades 

the whole universe — 

like clay in things made of clay, 

like gold in things made of gold, 

and like yarn in things made of yarn 

- is called the infinite. 

The joyful consciousness, 
the oceanic bliss without limit, 
that which is the essential nature of all joy, 
is bliss. 

The sage has called the ultimate existence, the brahman, the absolute, 
the imperishable one - knowledge, knowing. But it has nothing to do 
with what we call knowledge. If we can rightly understand what we 
call knowledge, then it will be easy to understand what the sage calls 

The first thing is: that our knowledge is always about some object 
of knowing,- just knowing, pure knowing never happens to us. We 
always attain to knowledge about some object; just the knowing, the 
pure phenomenon of knowing never happens to us. We know a tree, 

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Love Is Freedom 

a man, a stone in the street, the sun in the sky ; whenever we know, 
we know something as an object. Pure knowing is never experienced. 

The sages call the knowing of objects impure knowledge, because 
in it the emphasis is on the object, not on the knowing itself. When 
we look at the sun in the sky, the sun becomes our focus, not the 
phenomenon of perception, of knowing. 

If we were deprived of all objects our knowledge would disappear 
at once because it has no existence without these objects. It means 
that this knowledge does not depend on us, it depends on the objects. 
If all the objects were removed and there was only a void around 
us our knowledge would disappear. We have not known knowledge 
rooted in itself; our knowledge is rooted in objects. This is a very 
simple conclusion; with the removal of all objects, our knowledge will 
also vanish. This is amazing - it means that this knowledge does not 
depend on us, it depends on the objects we experience. This is the 
state of our knowledge. 

The sage does not mean this kind of knowing when he says, 
"Brahman is knowing," because knowledge which depends on 
others the sages call ignorance. If you haven’t the freedom to be 
the master of your own knowledge, then where else can you have 
freedom and mastery? 

This knowledge of ours is related to all our other experiences. All 
our experiences are like this knowledge. Can you remain in the state 
of love when there is no one to be loved? Can you still love in the 
absence of your beloved? You may think you can, but it is possible 
only when you at least bring your beloved into your imagination, 
otherwise not. This imagination of the object will help, but you 
cannot be loving on your own, so how can this love be your intrinsic 
nature? This love is dependent on others. 

That is why lovers become the worst slaves on earth — although 
love should bring the mastery of one’s self, love should be your 
ultimate freedom because it is the greatest treasure. But we do not 

239 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

know this treasure. What we call love is always dependent on others. 
It becomes such a dependence that it becomes slavery. 

Love is freedom, so our love, and the love talked about by Jesus or 
Buddha as freedom, are quite different things. 

We become aware of beauty when we see a flower, we become 
aware of beauty when we see the setting sun - but are we aware of the 
beauty which is not dependent on objects, which is direct and pure 
beauty? No, we have not known such beauty. All our experiences are 
other-oriented, and we are the sum total of these experiences. 

So do we have our own existence, our own individuality, or are we 
only a collection, the sum total of a few experiences which depend on 
others? If flowers don’t bloom, beauty vanishes for us. If there are no 
objects, our knowledge vanishes. If there is no beloved, love vanishes 
for us. 

Whatsoever we have, we have received it from others. Our 
existence is borrowed. That is why we stand begging before others 
our whole life — because we are afraid all the time that if others refuse 
to sustain us, we will slip away and disappear. 

When your beloved dies you are not pained because of his or her 
death, you are pained because it is the death of your own love,- you 
have never known a love which is there even without the beloved. 
When you lose wealth the pain is not due to this loss, it is due to the 
fact that along with the wealth your reality as a rich man is going. 
If you take away the scriptures of a learned man, you are not only 
taking away the scriptures, along with it his very knowledge is going. 
That’s why a pundit, a scholar, values his books more than his head, 
he values the book above his own existence - he bows down to his 
scriptures. If his foot happens to touch the book, he is scared. If his 
knowledge is so dependent on this book, this is not knowledge. 

So the first thing is: all our experiences are borrowed - we 
ourselves are borrowed. If our every experience is taken away from 
us we would vanish like a machine whose every part is separated and 


removed. A machine is nothing but the sum total of its parts. And he 
who is only such a collection will not be able to know the soul which 
is the ultimate freedom. 

Try to understand this knowing which the sage calls brabmacjyan. 

The first thing is that it is not dependent on the other, on the 
object, on some thing. When knowledge depends on an object it is 
a relationship, when it does not depend on the object it is a state of 
being. Try to understand the difference between a state of being and 
a relationship. 

You say, "1 love you." Now, this love will disappear if you are 
not there because this love is a relationship, it needs two entities,- 
a relationship is between two entities. If one of the two is removed, 
then the relationship also disappears. You cannot build a bridge using 
just one bank of a river, the other bank is also needed. The bridge is a 
relationship between the two banks. 

But Buddha is as full of love even when he is in solitude sitting 
under a tree with nobody around him, as when thousands of people 
are visiting him. It makes absolutely no difference to his love. His love 
is not a relationship, it is his state of being. Buddha is not attached 
to any person, love is his very nature. His love will shower even in a 
deserted place, like when a flower blooms on an untrodden path and 
spreads its fragrance. The flower does not wait for someone to pass 
by, it just spreads its fragrance. It is like a lamp alight in the darkness: 
nobody is there to see it but still it goes on giving light because it has 
no relationship with the other,- spreading light is its very nature. 

The sun was shining the same way when we did not exist on the 
earth. It will shine the same way when we are not here. There is no 
relationship between the shining of the sun and our looking at it. To 
shine is the very nature of the sun. 

A man like Buddha is always full of love - in fact, only a buddha is 
full of love - because this love cannot be taken away,- even alone, he 
is full of love. This love is not a bridge, not a relationship, this love is 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

a state of being, a state of consciousness. 

When the divine existence is called knowing, when the universal 
self is called knowing, it means knowing is its very nature, not a 

So the sage says: 

The eternal consciousness, 

which is beyond creation and destruction, 

is called knowing. 

A relationship is born and it dies, but the intrinsic nature is neither 
born nor does it die. Today I have love for you, yesterday it was not 
there - but today it is. This love has a birth, but insanity begins when 
we want to make something that has a birth, eternal. That is insanity! 
Death is inevitable for anything which has a birth. The day it was born, 
it should have been realized that one day it would die. Preparations 
for the funeral procession are hidden in the trumpets of joy on the 
very day of birth. It is only a matter of time. A flower is blooming, and 
it is also the beginning of its withering away. Life is bound to death; 
if life is one end then death is the other. So a love which is born is 
bound to die,- what is created will be destroyed as well. 

Knowledge which is born.. .and it is born: you opened your eyes, 
there was a flower before your eyes,- knowledge happened to you that 
there is a flower, that it is beautiful, that it is fragrant. This is a birth 
of knowledge. This knowledge will die. This flower will die and this 
knowledge about it will also die. 

But the brahman is a knowing which is never born and never dies. 
That means it is not related to some object, it is its very intrinsic 
nature - it is eternal. 

Zen masters ask their disciples to search for their original 
face: When you were not born, then what was your face? When 
you have passed away what will your face be? They make their 

I 242 | 

Love Is Freedom 

disciples meditate over it. It is very difficult. What will you think? 
What will you meditate upon? They give you this meditation so 
that thinking takes you to no-thinking, because you cannot go 
on thinking the unthinkable. A moment will come when all your 
thinking has to stop. 

Zen masters ask their disciples to meditate upon the sound of one 
hand clapping. The sound of one hand clapping is not possible - but 
they insist on it. If a meditator says that it is not possible, the master 
replies that the disciple should not bother about the possibility,- he 
says that it is possible and that the disciple should first meditate for 
months upon the sound of one hand clapping — the possibility is not 
the question. 

The meditator comes back again and again and reports that it is 
not possible; it has already been twenty-four hours. But the master 
replies that he should not worry about the possibility. "My question 
is: How does it sound?" He says, "Go and meditate." 

Months pass — one’s head starts feeling giddy, one’s mind starts 
feeling dizzy, everything stops within. After thinking and thinking 
and thinking it appears to be sheer madness, but then a moment 
comes when it is clear that no further thinking is possible. Thinking 
stops for a moment and the meditator rushes to say, "I have heard the 
sound of one hand clapping." 

As soon as thinking stops, the intrinsic nature of the self is revealed. 

Search for the face which was there before your birth. It is not 
possible, because there was no face before birth — it is birth which 
gives birth to one’s face also — and there will be no face after death, 
because death takes away the face. 

Think! A moment comes after thinking and thinking and thinking 
when thinking stops, the chain is broken, and then what is seen is 
the original face - that which is your very nature, that which existed 
before your birth and that which will be even after your death. 

| 243 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

The eternal consciousness, 

which is beyond creation and destruction, 

is called knowing. 

Here knowing is equated to consciousness, not to the act of 
knowledge, because knowledge is always of some object. Here 
knowing means consciousness, enlightenment. The word knowledge 
has been contaminated, because we always tie it to the phenomenon 
of knowing some object. 

If you are introduced as a man of great knowledge, immediately 
there will be a query about what is the subject of your knowledge. 

If you say, "Nothing in particular, 1 am just a man of knowledge, 
that is all," it will not be convincing to anybody. What does it mean? 
What do you know? They will want to know whether you know 
medical science or economics or philosophy or theology — in what 
subject are you a man of knowledge? But if you say, "No, I am just 
a man of knowledge," this will appear to be a meaningless statement 
because for us knowledge always pertains to something, it is in 
relation to some object. 

This sort of knowledge has no relation with the knowing spoken 
of in the sutra as a definition of brahman, the ultimate reality. That 
knowing is the eternal consciousness, beyond birth and destruction. 
"Awareness" is the right word for it - or better than that is "alertness," 
just the pure perceptivity — because awareness too appears to be 
related to something. No, there is just a lighted lamp with no object 
to be illuminated, only the lamp burning clearly - nothing around to 
be illuminated. Nothing is being illuminated, there is only the light. 1 
am saying this as an example so that you may conceive what is meant 
by knowing. 

The consciousness which fills and pervades 
the whole universe — 


Love Is Freedom 

like clay in things made of clay, 
like gold in things made of gold, 
and like yarn in things made of yarn 
- is called the infinite. 

This consciousness is not confined by the boundaries of a person. 
We are all sitting here - our differences are due to our bodies, not due 
to the consciousness. 

If we light thousands of earthen lamps in this room the differences 
will be of the clay pots, or of the oil, or in the wick, but the light 
will be one and the same. We can light thousands of lamps here and 
every lamp can be different in structure, in form, in shape, the oil 
or the wick, all these may be different, but can you differentiate the 
light, which light belongs to which lamp? The light will be one, all- 
pervading - but the lamps can differ. Our differences are the same as 
these lamps. The matter of the body, the shape, the fuel in the body, 
the wick, all these may differ but the consciousness — the light within 
us - is one. 

The inner journey, by and by, leads us to oneness, and the outer 
journey leads us to diversity. So the sage says: "That which permeates 
like gold in golden things and like clay in clay things, is one." 

Now even scientists agree to it. They did not agree fifty years ago 
because then science believed that one thing cannot be converted 
into another, and those who believed that such a conversion was 
possible were thought to be ignorant. In the West these people were 
called alchemists, and in the East they were called the seekers of the 
paras stone, the "philosopher’s stone" which turns base metal into 
gold. They were engaged in seeking a stone which can turn base metal 
into gold by touch. Alchemists were also engaged in seeking for the 
secret of turning base metals into precious metals. 

But for the last two hundred years science has believed that this 
is all madness, that it is just not possible. How can iron be changed 

245 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

into gold? — there seems to be no way. Those people who made these 
claims were thought to be either fools or cheats who were trying to 
deceive people. If they could turn iron into gold there must be some 
trickery involved. Iron cannot be turned into gold, so there must be 
some deception and cheating. Things came to a point where, even 
when authentic evidence became available, still those people were 
not trusted. 

A great German thinker and scientist was engaged for years in 
trying to prove that alchemy was a farce. Hasenhoff was his name. He 
was sitting at his door one morning when a man came to him and said, 
"I have heard that you have no faith in alchemy, but I can turn iron 
into gold right now." 

Hasenhoff said, "You seem to be an interesting man, but iron 
cannot be turned into gold. You have gone mad, 1 have been studying 
this for years and it is impossible." 

The man said, "Will you trust me if I myself show you?" He 
opened a small box and said, "This is the thing, its slightest touch will 
turn iron into gold." 

Hasenhoff could not believe it at all; he thought: "This man must 
be mad. How can iron be turned into gold?" He had been studying 
alchemy for years. Even then, he felt the thing with his hand and 
scratched it with his nails. Hasenhoff then asked the man to come 
back the next day so that he could ascertain that there was no trickery 
involved. He would then arrange to get some iron and call for an 
expert to test it. 

The man never returned, and Hasenhoff repented and grieved his 
whole life because he had later touched some iron with his nails, and 
the iron had turned into gold. That man never turned up, but the stuff 
that had collected under his nails with that small scratch turned iron 
into gold. 

Hasenhoff has written in his autobiography: "I can wait for that 
man for lives and lives. Now I am in a difficulty. Even if it is a trick, it 

I 246 

Love Is Freedom 

is wonderful. Anyway, now there was no way for any trickery, because 
only a small amount of scratched-out particles was with me and even 
that turned my iron into gold - pure gold." 

All kinds of tests were carried out to their satisfaction, but then 
they began to doubt Hasenhoff. Was he tricking them? Nobody was 
ready to accept his version, and how could he prove it? He said: "I 
myself cannot believe it, but it happened. And now nobody is ready 
to believe me." 

People wrote: "It seems that Hasenhoff has gone mad due to 
his excessive investigations about alchemy. He has been deceived. 
Although the man is honest and sincere, above suspicion, still it 
seems he has in some way fallen into some self-deception,- his mind 
has become confused. Such pure gold — it is impossible." 

Now, during these last twenty years, science has come to 
the conclusion that there is no basic difficulty in doing this. The 
alchemists were on the right track, the seekers of the philosopher s 
stone were right because science has discovered that everything is 
made of the same basic stuff,- only the quantity of electrons, protons 
and neutrons differs. For example, a certain element may contain 
one hundred electrons and another may contain one hundred and 
one, but the basic nature of the electrons which constitute the two 
elements is the same. So if we can separate one electron from the 
element made of the one hundred and one electrons, it will change 
into a one-hundred-electron element. 

Gold and iron do not differ in their basic nature, they differ only 
in the quantity of their electrons. If the number of the electrons of 
an atom of iron were changed, you could have an atom of gold. Or if 
we change the number of electrons in the gold atom, it can turn into 
an iron atom. 

Science has reached to such depths that it has found that 
the nature of matter is one, although forms differ. This nature is 
energy, it is the same in all matter. However science has not yet 

I 247 I 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

found any technique to turn iron into gold cheaply because the 
research for changing atoms is too costly as yet; it is more costly 
than the original gold. In the future we may find a cheaper process, 
but that is another matter,- we are not concerned with that. Even 
if a cheaper process is never found, one thing is certain: iron can 
be turned into gold. 

Any object can change into another object; not only into an 
object but into energy too. That is the secret of atomic energy — to 
transform matter into energy,- hence the atomic explosion. With the 
splitting of one small atom, tremendous energy is released. 

The sages of the Upanishads have always said that the atoms of 
consciousness are also not different, they are the same; our forms on 
the surface are different, but consciousness within is one. 

So as we go deeper and deeper within, we move away from our 
external personalities,- we are eliminated more and more and the 
universal is more and more. One dies exactly at one’s own center. To 
go within is to dissolve into one’s own death, because when we vanish 
as a personality, we disappear as the lamp and remain as the light. That 
light is limitless. 

The consciousness which fills and pervades 

the whole universe - 

like clay in things made of clay, 

like gold in things made of gold, 

and like yarn in things made of yarn 

- is called the infinite. 

...infinite, because although it resides within limits, forms, it is 
not limited. It is in gold but does not end in gold, it is within you but 
does not end in you — it goes on expanding, and expanding — its very 
quality is unending expansion, it is all-pervading, universal. 

Understand it like a vast ocean, and we are the fish in this 


Love Is Freedom 

ocean. A fish is born in the ocean and dies in the ocean; the fish 
is created out of ocean water and it merges back into the ocean 
water. But the fish, when it exists, exists just as a person does; it 
then disappears into the ocean and again takes form out of the 
ocean - it is ocean. 

Or if it is a little difficult to understand about a fish, take the 
example of an iceberg floating in the sea. It appears to be quite 
separate. It raises its head, and it appears to be quite different from 
the water, totally solid — but even then it is the sea, and as soon as it 
melts it will disappear. 

This melting process has been called the dropping of the ego ; as 
we melt, the ego dissolves and we become one with the vast ocean. 
The iceberg may think itself different but it is not. Any difference we 
feel is due to our ignorance, our wisdom becomes the declaration of 
our oneness. 

This all-pervading infinite has been called brahman, godliness. This 
word brahman is very precious,- it means something which is expanding 
endlessly. Brahman means the infinite expansion. Expansion and brahman 
have the same root. Brahman means that which goes on expanding, 
goes on expanding,- there is no limit to its expansion. 

No word like brahman exists in any other language in the world. It 
cannot be translated. Brahman is not connected with "lord" or "god"; 
there is no connection. That is why Shankara has dared to say that 
even God is a part of the illusion - even God - because your God 
too has shape and form. Brahma the creator, Vishnu the sustainer 
and Mahesh the destroyer - all have forms; they are also parts of the 
illusion. Figure and form belong to the illusion. The formless beyond 
all these is brahman — it is a name for expansion, for infinite expansion 
pervading the whole of creation,- never ceasing, it goes on expanding. 
Hence, it is infinite. 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

The joyful consciousness, 
the oceanic bliss without limit, 
that which is the essential nature of all joy, 
is bliss. 

Try to understand it: The joyful consciousness... 

Whenever you experience happiness, you do not experience 
that you are happiness,- you feel that you are someone to whom this 
happiness has happened. Happiness is a happening to you - it is not 
your nature, because one cannot lose that which is one’s nature - 
but as it is you go on losing your happiness. Your happiness in the 
morning changes into sorrow by the evening. 

So happiness comes, sorrow comes, but they come to you. They 
happen to you and then leave,- these are just happenings. So when 
brahman is called the embodiment of bliss, it means that happiness is 
not happening to it but is its intrinsic nature,- brahman is always happy, 
it is happiness itself. 

When happiness is our intrinsic nature then it is called bliss. 
When bliss is only a happening, it is called happiness. 

A happening means it is something foreign or alien. It happens to 
us, it comes from the outside, it happens outside our house. However 
much we may think that we are one with it, we can never really be. 

Diogenes, a Greek mystic, wandered around naked. Once 
someone asked him, "Why did you drop wearing clothes?'' 

Diogenes replied, "I tried my best to hold onto them but I could 
not, so 1 dropped them. 1 tried hard to cling to wearing clothes, to 
make them become a part of me, but I could not. Then 1 thought: 
What I cannot become must be only an outside phenomenon, so it 
should be dropped. Nakedness is my nature and clothes are only a 
covering on the surface,- they may have been there but I have always 
been naked within." 

Everybody is naked inside their clothes,- there is no other way to 


be. Clothes may deceive others into thinking that you are not naked, 
but they cannot deceive you. And yet they Jo deceive you. This is 
amazing: people wearing clothes think that they are not naked - but 
clothes only belong to the outside. 

So Diogenes says, "I did my best to hold onto wearing clothes, 
but ultimately 1 found that I could not; they remained on the outside, 
they remained separate. There was no way to make them a part of me, 
and that which is not part of me, what need is there to try to believe 
that it is mine? Hence I dropped them." 

When Alexander marched to India, Diogenes was lying by the 
side of the road. He saw Diogenes and asked him, "You seem to be so 
happy, so full of joy, and yet you possess nothing? " Alexander could 
not understand that you can be joyous without any reason. How can 
you be happy for no reason? 

The sages say that the day you are happy for no reason is the day 
of bliss. But our logic says: "You have nothing - no wife, no son, no 
wealth, no palace, no comforts; you are lying naked on the road, on 
the earth, and yet you seem to be so happy! What is the reason?" 

Diogenes replied, "I could not be happy as long as there was a 
reason for my happiness. Then I thought to leave this seeking for the 
reasons for happiness and to seek that happiness which exists without 
reasons, that which cannot be taken away from me." 

Whatsoever has a reason for its existence can be taken away, 
because the reason itself can be taken away. 

For example, there is a woman and you are happy because of 
her - but she may die tomorrow or any day, and thus she can be 
snatched away. And even if she doesn’t die she may leave you and the 
relationship ends,- then your happiness will be gone. Or, for instance, 
you are wealthy today, but tomorrow all your wealth may disappear,- 
then your happiness will be lost. Even if your wealth continues to be 
with you, your happiness will leave you anyway because whatsoever 
is continuously available no longer creates happiness. 

Happiness will not last long whenever there is a reason for it. 
Happiness which is dependent on some outside reason is momentary. 
But is there such a thing as happiness without a reason? Happiness 
for no reason is what we call bliss. If there is bliss and no reason for 
it, this means that it is not coming from the outside, it is coming from 
within. If there is bliss but there is a reason for it, this means that it 
is coming from without. That is why we depend on the outside — we 
depend on others. Anybody can take our happiness away, anybody 
can take it away at any moment. And how can you be the master of 
that which comes from the outside? 

But there is another dimension also — where the bliss comes from 
within, where the flow is completely reversed. 

Radha is the name of Krishna’s beloved. The name is a reversal 
of the syllables of dhara, a current, a flow. This name is very 
interesting, because there is no mention of Radha at all in the 
story of the life of Krishna, not even a word. No ancient scripture 
mentions Radha, no episode relates to Radha. It was much later 
- one could say, in more recent years - that Radha was first 
mentioned, that Radha’s name was added to the story. Certainly 
there is a mention of a friend in the story of the life of Krishna, 
but she has no name, she has been left unnamed. It was knowingly 
done that she was not given a name, because she was that friend 
who is beyond name and form. Even her figure has not been talked 
of, how she looked, her face - nothing. 

In the middle ages the saints called her Radha. They called her 
so knowingly, because this was a reversal of the syllables of dhara, a 
current, a flow. 

There is a flow of bliss which comes from without - that is 
dhara - and when the bliss comes from within it is radha. Krishna 
can love only this type of Radha, the one who is flowing from 
within,- Krishna has no relationship with a Radha who comes from 
the outside. 

Love Is Freedom 

When bliss starts flowing from within, when it becomes this Radha, 
then you have found that friend who is never lost, who cannot be lost. 

The joyful consciousness, 

the oceanic bliss without limit, 

that which is the essential nature of all joy... 

When every cause for happiness has been left behind and when 
everything has gone but still a happiness remains, that happiness is 
the nature of brahman. This has been called bliss. 

We do not know bliss, we are not aware of bliss, because bliss can 
be known only when dhara, the flow from the outside, becomes radha, 
the flow from within. Then a new dimension has opened within. 

So Diogenes says, "I am happy because I am happiness, I am not 
happy for some reason." 

Alexander felt jealous: it is an ultimate event in this world when an 
emperor is jealous of a beggar. And Alexander even said, "If 1 am born 
again I would not like to be Alexander, I would like to be Diogenes; I 
too am seeking for this bliss." 

And Diogenes said to Alexander, "Seeking! You will never get 
anything by seeking. Stop here. There is enough space, relax beside 
me. 1 have achieved it without going anywhere - right here! Where 
are you rushing to? There is enough space - come and lie down here 
beside me." 

Alexander replied, "It is difficult right now. 1 have set out to 
conquer the world." 

Diogenes said, "It is not only difficult right now, it will always 
be difficult for one who has set out to conquer the world because 
the journey of conquest is the journey to sorrow. If you want to 
conquer something, conquer yourself; in conquering the other is 
hidden your own defeat. As you go on conquering others, you 
lose yourself within. Leave others alone, because while you are 

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struggling with others you are defeating yourself within. Conquer 
yourself, know yourself." 

Alexander replied, "I will stay with you for a while when 1 return." 

Diogenes said, "You may not return, and you are losing this 
moment — this moment, which is certainly here now — and yet you are 
thinking of a moment which has not yet come." 

And as destiny would have it, Alexander could not return. He died 
in the middle of his journey when returning from India. 

No journey of conquest is ever completed; death comes in 
between. We have undertaken many journeys of conquest, in many 
lives, and each time they remain incomplete. Death creates a 
discontinuity. Again we start on a journey of conquest and again it 
remains incomplete. Death interrupts again and again. 

Only one conquest can be completed. 

Only one bliss can be achieved, and that bliss does not come from 
outside, it is present within, at this moment. 

Enough for today. 

Now get ready for the meditation. 

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You Are More than You Think 

That which is truth, knowing, infinity and bliss, 
and which is unchanging through the mediums of time, 
space and matter is tat, that, 
or paramatma, the universal self. 

That which is separate from thou and that, 
is subtle like the sky, its sole nature is just being,- 
this we call the param brahman , the ultimate reality. 

Those who are bound to the I, the ego, find it very difficult to reach 
up to thou, godliness. How can anyone who is surrounded by the I go 
to the feet of thou? Surrendering will be very difficult. 

That is why the sage says to make thou the center and I the 
periphery. He also says that pure, conscious existence has the nature 
of thou. It is a great leap from I to thou ; perhaps no other leap is 
greater than this. To leave your 1 is so difficult — it is not like taking 
off your clothes, it is more like peeling off your skin. To drop the I or 
to discard it is very difficult because in this very attempt the I raises 
its head again and again. 

And who is it who will drop this 1? Whosoever drops the 1, is the I. 
So how to drop the I? Whatever device is used, it is still in the hands 
of the I. But that which appears to be nearly impossible becomes 
possible if you have courage. Try to understand this courage, then 
you will be able to understand this jump. 

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Whosoever endeavors to eliminate the I will be in trouble, because 
to eliminate it is also a doing, and every doing strengthens the doer. 
Whosoever desires to drop the I will be in trouble, because in that 
very effort to drop it you are acknowledging its existence. Whatever 
you desire to drop, you are also accepting that it is more powerful 
than you are. You only avoid that of which you are afraid. 

So neither can you eliminate the 1 because elimination is a doing, 
nor can you avoid the I because where can you escape to in order to 
avoid it? Whatever you avoid always chases you. Whatever you are 
afraid of you run away from and it becomes a continuous shadow. 

Then what to do with the 1 so that the jump towards thou becomes 
possible? The only way is neither to run away, nor to try to eliminate, 
nor to try to avoid it but to watch it, to recognize it, to know it and 
to get acquainted with it. 

There is only one way to destroy a shadow,- a sword cannot cut a 
shadow - or can it? A sword will break, but still the shadow cannot 
be destroyed. If it had really existed it could have been removed but 
it is nonexistent, it only appears to exist. Can you escape from your 
shadow by running away from it? The faster you run the faster the 
shadow follows you because it is your shadow - where will you escape 
to, where will you run to? 

There is only one way to get rid of the shadow and that is to know 
the shadow for what it is, then you can be free. Neither removing 
it nor escaping from it is needed, because as soon as you know the 
shadow to be a shadow no fear remains, no concern to eliminate it 
remains. In knowing the shadow you know that it does not exist, it 
only appears to exist. 

There is only one way to be free from the I and that is to come to 
know the I so deeply that it appears to be a shadow, and at that very 
moment you are freed of it. That is why people practicing humbleness 
can never reach to thou. 

Humility is a refined form of the ego. The more refined it is, the 

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more dangerous it is, and subtle too. That is why the ego of a person we 
call humble, virtuous, increases in him and peeps out every moment. 
Humility is an ornament of the ego, the most beautiful ornament ego 
can wear. Humility is a beautiful mask which the ego can display. 

Humility is never straightforward. In fact, when the ego has no 
mask it is more simple and straightforward than humility. Bad men 
are more genuine and clear than good men because bad men are 
straightforward egoists, while good men are indirect egoists. Their 
ego is behind many layers - very refined, polished. An ordinary 
man’s ego is unpolished and uncut like a raw diamond, whereas the 
so-called good man’s ego is like a cut diamond — cut and polished, 
shining. It has a good shine, a brightness, but the sparkle in the ego 
is a poison. Whether you polish your ego or hide it or avoid it or 
try to escape from it, you are not freed from it. Come to know your 
ego, go within and recognize what this ego is. So don t be in a rush, 
don’t make any judgments. 

We make the mistake in our lives of making judgments before we 
have the experience, and we begin from those judgments. We are like 
children solving sums, who first look at the answers in the back of the 
book and then start from there. Then they never learn the method - 
why should they? They already have the answers. Then what need is 
there to learn methods? 

But this answer in the last pages of the book is not your answer, 
it is borrowed, it will not transform your life. Someone who does 
not learn the method and does not draw his own conclusions lives a 
borrowed life, and all of your conclusions are borrowed. 

You read in the scriptures that the ego is bad. This conclusion 
is not yours - it is in the scriptures. You don’t even know what this 
ego is,- whether it is good or bad can be decided on later. You are 
unacquainted with what it is, you have not had even a glimpse of what 
it is but you will still have a conclusion about it. 

Anger is bad’ is a conclusion taken from the scriptures. From 

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the scriptures you come to know everything that is good and bad, 
but still you remain the same as you are, even though you appear to 
know everything. 

People come to me and say that they know all this, there is nothing 
which they do not know — but now transformation has become 
more difficult because they think they know everything. They have 
borrowed this knowledge, now there is no room to learn and therefore 
there is no possibility of transformation. 

So keep this sutra in mind: knowledge which does not transform 
you is borrowed. Your conclusions are not yours because your 
knowledge is not your own, it is not your experience. It is all stale, 
dead and rotten. 

Try to know your ego and don’t make any judgments, that this is 
good or this is bad; look at it directly. And if you cannot even see your 
own ego you will never be able to see the thou or that, because the 
ego is your outer layer and thou is your center. How can one who has 
not yet come to know his ego know thou or that ? 

So first know this 1 and as you come to know this I it will disperse. 
The fire of this knowing reduces the I into ashes. The 1 vanishes 
like smoke, as if it never was, it vanishes like a shadow. As soon as it 
vanishes the seeker stands facing the thou. But the sage says this thou 
is also not yet the ultimate because it exists in relation to the I, which 
existed before,- this thou has been founded on the memory of the 1. 

Even if the situation changes our memory does not, it needs time 
to change. The memory of the I has come from many, many past 
lives. So even if the ego becomes a shadow today our language will 
not change, because language is created only around the I. We will 
still speak the same language. Although the ego has been proved 
to be nonexistent and has withered away and is now known to be 
only a shadow, still our language was born around that shadow,- a new 
language is not going to be created in a day. Our way of seeing was 
always from that position. 

You Are More than You Think 

If a blind man regains his sight he will not be able to drop his cane 
all at once. Even if he has regained his sight he will still walk with 
the cane for a little while because he has been associating with it for 
such a long time, and now it is difficult to lose his dependency on it. 
Although the cane has now become useless, it will take time for him 
to find full confidence in his eyes and to leave the cane behind. 

Even if the 1 disappears, our language and memory will still 
move around it. This is why the first glimpse of reality will be in the 
language of thou. In the first experience of reality there will also be 
a glimpse of deep love. The reason behind it is that we have always 
been seeking for love which we never found; we have been searching 
for the beloved whom we have never met. We have searched for many 
lives and failed. So when for the first time godliness manifests itself 
within and the ultimate consciousness permeates, it appears like a 
meeting with the beloved; that the temple we were looking for is 
here, that the door we were searching for is just in front of us. 

So the first language will be of I and of love. The devotee has 
always spoken this language. But the sage says that it is not the 
ultimate language. When the blind man throws his cane away, when 
the memory of the I vanishes, then how will you be able to call it 
thou? Who is there to now call it thou? What meaning will there 
be left in thou? When the I is gone, thou will become useless, it will 
become meaningless. 

That is why the second jump happens from thou to that; in this 
jump thou disappears, in this jump godliness manifests in the form 
of that. Then we can say neither 1 nor thou - we say that. In this that, 
not even a trace of the 1 remains. Not even that much is left which 
we once called thou. The I disappears like a line drawn on water. 
With this, the thou too disappears because it is only the other aspect 
of the I. Now only that remains. That is the purest assertion, now no 
impression of the memory or of the past is casting its shadow. That is 
quite unattached and indifferent. 

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That has these four attributes: truth, knowing, infinity and bliss - 
which we talked of in the morning. The sage calls them attributes. 
"Attributes" are descriptions of how that is recognized, or the way in 
which we recognize that. These are two different things. 

If the sage says, it is truth, knowing, infinity and bliss, that will also 
create limitations. If he says that is infinite, this definition too will 
make that finite. 

Try to understand this. It is a very subtle perception - very subtle, 
minute and delicate. When one says that the divine is indefinable, one 
has already defined it. This statement looks contradictory but it is not, 
because you have defined it as being indefinable. You have accepted 
this much definition - "It is indefinable." That is also a definition, you 
have said something — and you have said much. If it is right, you have 
defined it completely. If this is true, that it is indefinable, then this 
becomes the definition. What else could a definition be? 

What does a definition mean? A definition means saying something 
real about something. Even if we only say this much - that a definition 
is not possible — we have defined it. If we just say that truth is its 
definition, we are binding it to a limit; even though we are using a 
beautiful word, truth, it is still a limit. When we say that it is truth, we 
are drawing a line to exclude the untruth and thereby separating it 
from the truth. And we are binding truth by this dividing line,- untruth 
falls outside and truth has to remain within that line. 

The sage says that this is not correct because if untruth exists, it 
is also contained within the divine. Nothing can exist outside of that. 
And to say that that is only truth is to give that a limit, a boundary. That 
is why some people have not said anything about that - only because 
to say anything is to commit a mistake. If we say it is knowing, we are 
drawing a boundary line. If we say it is infinite, which means it has 
no limit... But if we have come to know that it is infinite, it has then 
become finite. 

Someone says that the ocean is unfathomable. What could that 

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mean? Either this man has already been to the ocean’s limits and has 
explored the whole ocean and found it unfathomable — which is an 
impossibility, because if there is no limit to its depth, how could he 
come to the conclusion that it is unfathomable? Has he reached its 
limit, has he explored the whole vastness of the ocean? And if he has, 
then it has a limit. And if he has not been that far then he should not 
call it unfathomable,- he should only say that as far as he has been, no 
limit was found. 

That is why the sage says "attributes." An attribute means: As far 
as 1 could go, I found the ocean to be unfathomable. But this is only 
my experience, how can I say this is the actual state of the ocean? It 
might be that the limit was only one foot ahead of where I finished 
exploring - this is not an impossibility in any way. I could not find 
a limit, but how can 1 exclude the possibility of the limit being just 
ahead of me? All that 1 know is knowledge, but how can 1 say that 
there is nothing more beyond my knowledge? 

That is why the sage calls them attributes. "Attributes" means 
that we recognize that it is our perception, that to the extent of our 
knowing we accept that it is truth, it is knowing, it is infinite and it is 
bliss. We have found it to be so. 

The sages have always taken care that should there be a mistake, 
it should fall on our part, on the human side. The sages have always 
consciously accepted that they can make a mistake, but there is no 
reason that their mistake is to be imposed on the divine. 

Our minds work in totally contradictory ways. Whatever 
conclusions we draw, we immediately impose them on others. We do 
not understand that we are always using this one approach. A man 
appears to be handsome and we say, "He is handsome." We should 
restrict ourselves to saying, "He looks handsome to me" — just this 
much, this is enough. And if a man appears ugly, we should not say, 
"He is ugly"; it is enough to say, "He looks ugly to me, this is my 
feeling." To someone else he may be handsome. And if a man appears 

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to me to be a saint, I should restrict myself to saying that "He appears 
to be a saint to me." He may not be a saint at all to others - and where 
is the way for anybody to know what he really is? 

What you know from external appearances are your perceptions 
- your likings, your dislikings. You are present in them. But you 
immediately exclude yourself and impose your conclusions on others. 
Then the difficulty arises. 

The sage says, these are attributes. Bliss too, he says, is an 
attribute, because you have been in so much distress for so many 
lives that the experience may have felt like bliss to you. It is like 
a man who is hungry for days and then gets a piece of dry bread. 
He says, "Ah! Today’s food is so delicious and satisfying, just the 
ultimate in taste,- there is nothing better." He is saying it for himself. 
He is simply saying that he had been hungry for a long time and in 
fact the taste of the food is due more to his hunger and less to the 
food. That is why someone who knows will say, "I am very hungry 
and that is why the food tastes so delicious." An attribute means 
that it is a perception. 

There comes a moment when we are completely emptied: the 
1 is completely eliminated, the thou is eliminated and our every 
experience is eliminated. Then what will we say? Will we call it 
the infinite? We call it infinite because whatever we had known 
previously was finite,- compared to our previous experience that was 
infinite. What we knew before was sorrow, so in comparison this is 
bliss. What we knew before was only ignorance and in comparison to 
this it is knowing. What we knew before was untruth, in comparison 
this is truth. But when we completely disappear, how then will we 
define that? 

Whenever Buddha was asked about the definition of that he 
remained silent, or he would say, "Inquire about something else." 
When Buddha would enter a town he would inform the people that 
he should not be asked eleven questions, and one of them included 

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the definition of brahman. Many would ask Buddha, "Are you unable to 
tell us because you don’t know?" 

Of course, you would start thinking from your own angle,- if 
Buddha doesn’t tell you he himself must not know. So many people 
would go away concluding that Buddha did not know and had not yet 
experienced it, hence his silence. 

What they should have said is: "As we understand it, those who 
speak are the ones who know and those who do not speak don’t know 
it. That’s why we think that since Buddha is silent he may not know 
it himself." But no, instead they gave conclusions: "Buddha doesn’t 
know it,- that is why he is silent. How can he tell us when he himself 
does not know?" Many others drew the conclusion: "The experience 
is so profound that we would not understand, hence he does not 
speak. He will speak when we are worthy." Many thought, "These 
experiences don’t exist and Buddha doesn’t want to hurt us, hence he 
doesn’t deny them but keeps silent." 

But rarely would someone conclude that Buddha remains silent 
because he has transcended both the I and the thou and has reached 
the point from where the one who sees the attributes has disappeared; 
from that point onward nothing can be said about brahman. 

So the sage says that, these attributes. 

An attribute means something we perceive. 

...which is unchanging through the mediums of time, 
space and matter... 

There are two ways for change to happen in the world: one change 
happens in space, the other happens in time. Every change happens 
in time and space. You came here from your town - so two kinds 
of change happened: you left your town, you changed the space,- 
and then it took time to reach here, thus you changed the time. You 
started in the morning, you reached here in the evening, you started 
from place A and arrived at place B. Two kinds of change happened, a 
change in time and a change in space. 

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Time and space are the bases for change, but time and space 
cannot make any change to the ultimate reality. What might be the 
reason for this? The only reason is that we live in time and space, 
while time and space themselves live in the ultimate reality that has 
no possibility of leaving one place and reaching another because 
all space is within that, and that has no possibility of entering 
into the next year from this year because all of time is contained 
within that. 

This is why we say the divine is beyond time and space, because 
even for time and space to exist, some "where" is needed - which also 
exists within the divine. We have defined God as isness, existence, 
or that which is, so if time also exists it can only be within God. 
Whatsoever exists can exist only within the divine. This is why time 
and space do not create any change in the divine. 

For us there are three divisions of time: the present, the past and 
the future. For the divine, time is always the present. For us, here and 
there exist, but for the divine everything is here. For us, yesterday and 
tomorrow have a time gap, but for the divine everything is here and 
now,- for the divine it is eternally so. So in the language of existence 
there are no other words except here and now as far as time and space 
are concerned. 

What we mean by "God" is existence. Existence is called that. It 
contains both the I and the thou. The I and the thou are born in it 
and disappear in it also. That which is unchanging is called that. These 
two, thou and that, are also attributes. 

The sage here is coming down step by step. First he says I is an 
attribute and thou represents the divine, and now he says thou is also 
an attribute, and finally so is that. 

That which is separate from thou and that, 

is subtle like the sky, its sole nature is just being... 

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Just to exist is its nature — this is the param brahman, beyond the 
ultimate reality. This is actually the ultimate reality - this alone is! A 
jump has been taken from the 1 to the thou, then from the thou to 
that ; now it has to be taken from that to the ultimate existence - where 
there remains no space even for that. Because when we say that, the 
gap still exists - the speaker is present, the finger which is pointing 
towards that is still present. We are still separate somewhere - maybe 
not in the form of the I, but we are still present. We may have known 
that the I does not exist and that thou does not exist, but the one who 
says this is still present. 

Even this gap, even this small gap, is not acceptable to the 
mystics, even this much distance cannot be tolerated. This distance 
is unacceptable. One more jump — and this jump is to where there is 
not even that. 

Buddha calls it the void, because nothing is left - neither I, nor 
thou, nor that. The Upanishads call it existence. Buddha calls it the 
void, because nothing is left of whatever we knew,- the Upanishads 
call it existence, because whatever we knew was not there in the 
first place. Only that which truly is has remained. What was not 
has disappeared. All dreams have vanished and only that which 
is has remained. Now nothing remains that can be excluded from 
it. This is why it has been called param brahman, that which is even 
beyond brahman. 

Up to now all of our definitions have pertained to brahman, they 
were definitions of brahman. Now the sage calls it that which is even 
beyond brahman, beyond the ultimate reality. He says, now drop this 
brahman also, and go beyond even this brahman which we have just 
discussed. Now leave even that which we have investigated so deeply,- 
now we will talk about that which is beyond even all of this. It only 
means that now all words and principles have disappeared, now even 
the seeker and the sought have dissolved — now what is left? 

The sage says: "Only that which now remains, exists." Call it 

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shunya, the void, or call it poorna, fullness, or remain silent about it, 
or go on speaking about it for lifetimes. It is what we are searching 
for. There cannot be any rest without discovering it because unless 
we attain to it we will continue to die,- death will happen again and 
again, suffering will continue. Unless we realize the space where 
whatever can perish has perished, death will be inevitable. After 
attaining to the beyond, to beyond the ultimate reality, then the 
experience of deathlessness. 

Life and death do not happen to that which is, they happen to that 
which we have created. The ego is our creation, of our own making,- 
it takes birth and it dies. Consciousness is not our creation; it existed 
before we were born and will exist after we die. It never dies, it never 
takes birth. 

Bokuju was a monk. As the priest in the temple, he offered 
flowers to Buddha’s statue in the mornings. A few people had come 
to listen to him. In the lecture hall he said, "Today 1 want to tell you 
that this man called Buddha never existed. He never existed, it is 
all a great lie." 

People were taken aback. They thought that Bokuju had gone 
mad, he was talking like a madman. He was a monk of Buddha’s, 
and earlier they had seen him in the temple offering flowers 
to Buddha, worshipping Buddha’s statue. They asked Bokuju, 
"Have you gone mad or are you joking? You have just now been 
worshipping him." 

He replied, "I have been worshipping him, and in the evening 
too I will worship him, but I tell you this man never existed. I did not 
understand this man until now, that is why I thought that he had been 
born and that he had died; but now 1 know. You still think 1 am mad, 
but you have not heard one more thing. 1 can tell you now that 1 too 
was never born and I shall never die." 

They were certain that he had gone mad. Buddha aside - be may 
or may not have been,- that matter was twenty-five hundred years old 

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You Are More than You Think 

and may be doubtful, he may not have existed - but Bokuju had just 
said, "I can tell you one more thing, that I was never born and I shall 
never die." 

A few people stood up to leave and asked for his permission to go. 
Now his discourse was going beyond the limit. 

Bokuju said, "Before you go, listen to the third thing also: I tell 
you that you were never born and you shall also never die. 

If all others are right Bokuju is mad, and if Bokuju is right all others 
are mad. There is no other alternative. But all the wise men on earth 
say that Bokuju is right. 

For that which is pure essence, pure existence, pure isness, life and 
death are no more than passing breezes. But life and death become 
so important to you because you don’t know them. That which you 
know, the ego, is your creation and it trembles even in the slightest 
breeze,- just a small breeze and the flame of the ego starts wavering: 
"Now I’m gone, now I’m gone!" 

The laws of life are very strange. If there is the flame of a tiny lamp, 
then even a small breeze puts it out. But if it is a huge, burning fire, 
then a big storm will only strengthen it. 

So if it is the ego which is facing the breeze, death appears 
to happen,- if it is pure isness facing it, then a glimpse of life is 
revealed. A little breeze hits the ego - and death, only death 
appears. But if storms hit the soul, the being, then you are bathed 
in the juice of life. 

A small breeze blows out a lamp but makes a blazing fire bigger 
and bigger. The ego is very small, it is our creation - but we are 
vast because we are not our own creation, we are created by 
the infinite. 

So understand that you are always larger than you see yourself 
— you are vaster than yourself; you are always beyond yourself. All 
your pettiness is the result of your own efforts, your own doing; 
all your wretchedness is the result of your own heroic efforts. It is 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

your own courageous deed that you have remained a small flame of a 
lamp, fearing death every moment, worrying about the sufferings, the 
troubles, the pains and the anxieties. 

Take a jump out of your madness. That jump starts from the ego. 
Enough for today. 

Now let us make some effort for this jump. 

I 268 | 

Chapter -1 4 

The End of Illusion 

That which has no beginning but which ends, 
which is present equally in what is seen and not seen, 
which is neither real, nor unreal, nor real-unreal, 
and which itself appears most pure, most flawless - 
that energy is called m ay a, illusion. 

It cannot be described in any other way. 

Illusion is ignorance, 

it is of no significance and is false. 

But to the deluded ones, 


illusion is real in the three states of time: 
past, present and future. 

Hence its true nature cannot be conveyed 
just by saying, "It is this. 

It would have been very simple to understand the reality of life if 
there had been only two categories within existence - the real and 
the unreal. Then we could easily have said that something exists or 
does not exist. There would have been no difficulty had there been a 
clear-cut division in life, in existence. But there is one more category 
of existence which we can neither say that it exists nor does not exist. 
That creates the whole complexity. 

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It is like when a rope is lying on the road, which to you looks 
like a snake because of the darkness. Does this snake exist or not? It 
would have been simple to say that yes, it exists, or no, it does not 
exist. Then there would have been no problem. But the snake seen 
in the rope is in one way nonexistent - because upon investigation 
you find that it is actually a rope and not a snake - but in another 
sense the snake is, because it has appeared to you. And it has not 
only appeared, it has caused you to run away. You could have fallen 
down in your hurry and even hurt yourself. It could have increased 
your heartbeat, made you perspire, and if you never returned to 
investigate it you would have always lived with the idea that it was 
a snake. 

Can one run away from something which doesn’t exist? Perspire 
because of something which doesn’t exist? Can the heart tremble 
because of something which doesn’t exist? Can all this happen 
because of a non-existent phenomenon? If all this can happen, 
then we have to accept its existence in some sense, because it is 
impossible to deny outright a non-existent phenomenon which can 
cause these happenings. 

You have a horrible dream during the night; your sleep is disturbed 
and yet you know it was only a dream - but your fast heartbeat is not 
reduced and your limbs continue to tremble. Accepted, it was just a 
dream, and now you also know that it was just a dream, but still the 
real heart trembles and the bewilderment continues. It will take some 
time for sleep to come again. 

The sages say that it is not right to call something nonexistent 
which influences the actual reality. And it is interesting that this third 
category is so dominating that our whole life is under its influence,- 
therefore it cannot be denied. This third category is so significant 
that our whole life is influenced by it and moves around it. 

That is why India has invented a new word, maya, illusion. Maya 
is neither the real nor the unreal, it is in between. In a way it is and in 

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The End of Illusion 

another way it is not. It has been called maya because it only appears 
to be. 

A magician can create a tree. In front of thousands of eyes this 
tree will start growing and in a moment it starts bearing fruit, and the 
fruit grows bigger. All of those who are seeing this know that it is not 
possible, that this is not so, but yet it appears to be so. 

The basic meaning of maya is the art of illusion. The basic meaning 
of maya is magic. It means that there is a possibility for that which 
does not exist to be seen. And on the other hand, it is also possible 
that that which is may not be seen. That which is may hide, and that 
which is not may manifest. 

These are the three states: the purely nonexistent, for which 
illusion is not possible,- the purely existent, for which illusion is not 
possible either,- plus that which exists in one way and does not exist 
in another way — only here is illusion possible. This third is also a form 
of existence,- it is called maya, illusion. This is the linguistic meaning 
of maya. If we can also come to understand the vastness of maya then 
we will know its other dimensions in life. 

That which is, is eternally so. It has no beginning and it has no end, 
it will remain eternally. That which is purely nonexistent, it too has no 
beginning. How can it have a beginning when it does not exist? It has 
no end because it never existed! Maya has no beginning, but it has an 
end; it is a category in between. It has no beginning, it is beginning¬ 
less — but it has an end. 

Take it like this: darkness is, it is eternal, but it can be ended,- if a 
light is lit, then the darkness disappears. The third category, that of 
maya, it exists eternally, like darkness. Yet when one is awakened in 
consciousness maya ends,- when the consciousness is full of light, the 
darkness of maya vanishes. That which is called maya is a vast dream. 

A dream has a special characteristic which is that when it is there, 
it feels real while it lasts. We all have dreams and then realize in the 
morning that the dream was not real, but when we have another 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

dream the next night, it again feels to be real. While dreaming we 
never remember that it is false. If we could remember, the dream 
would vanish. 

A dream has an intrinsic specialty,- when it is happening it is 
completely real - not even a bit of doubt arises, there is not a single 
doubt. Great doubters, who can doubt whether this world exists or 
not, still cannot doubt about a dream while it is happening. 

Berkeley, a great Western thinker, says: "1 doubt whether the 
world exists or not, because there is the possibility that it may be just 
a long dream. How can I believe that you are really sitting here? I may 
be simply dreaming. How can I be certain that the people I am seeing 
are really there? I may be talking to them in my dream. Any dream 
is just as real as you are real sitting here." So Berkeley asks: "How to 
trust? How to be certain that you are?" 

We call a dream a dream because it vanishes in the morning. But 
what we call waking also vanishes in the evening. When we wake up 
in the morning from a dream we find it was false, it has vanished. 
Someone who was an emperor in the night while he was dreaming 
finds himself a beggar in the morning. And then, having been a beggar 
the whole day long, when he sleeps at night he totally forgets about 
begging. During the night who remembers about being a beggar? Is 
there any difference between an emperor and a beggar during sleep? 
During a dream even an emperor cannot remember that he is an 
emperor. Thus the dream of the day vanishes in the night. 

Then what is the difference? One dream vanishes in the morning 
and the other vanishes in the evening. We forget the day during the 
night s dream and we forget the night during the day’s dream - what 
is the difference? 

So Berkeley says: How can I believe that there is some existence 
outside of me?" 

It is a very interesting idea, but even Berkeley is not able to 
remember while dreaming that what he is seeing can be doubted. 

I 272 | 

During the waking state doubt is possible, but during sleep doubt is 
not possible. Even the greatest of skeptics is not able to doubt during 
a dream. 

The illusory world of dreams is very strange. Even the waking 
state does not have that much power; it is less powerful because we 
can doubt it. We can say that one never knows if what is seen really 
exists or not. But the illusion within a dream is incredible. In dreams 
we are totally lost and drowned, we accept situations which are quite 
illogical. A dream does not allow for any logic,- if logic remains, doubt 
also remains. 

In a dream you see a friend standing before you suddenly turning 
into a horse — and you never doubt: How could it be possible? In your 
dream you never doubt. When you dream you are full of trust, your 
trust is absolute. In the waking state even the most trusting person 
has doubts, but in the dream state even the most doubting person 
trusts. You never doubt for a moment your friend becoming a horse - 
but how could it happen? 

In a dream everything is accepted — a dream has no logic. A dream 
has this quality - one cannot doubt while dreaming. Whatever is 
seen in a dream feels real as long as the dream continues. Anything 
may happen in a dream, it will not be inconsistent. It is just the same 
harmonious inner realm. 

A dream and what is called maya have a common characteristic. 
Understand it like this - maya is the dreaming in the waking state. 
That is why the more surrounded with illusion a mind is, the more 
difficult it is to doubt it, to raise doubt about this maya. This state of 
maya feels perfectly real to it. You see a face and it looks beautiful to 
you, it seems to you that your life can be sacrificed for this face. 

In the love story of Laila and Majnu, Laila never appeared to 
anybody else the way she looked to Majnu. The whole village felt 
Majnu’s pain, so the chief of the village called Majnu and said, "You 
are totally mad. 'XTiy do you think only of her? She is just a very 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

ordinary, very common girl. Why are you crazy about her? I feel pity 
for you" - because Majnu was wandering through the village weeping, 
crying, going from door to door, calling out "Laila... Lailaf" 

The news reached the emperor. He also saw Majnu’s suffering and 
felt that it was authentic, that his crying was real, and took pity on 
him. He called a dozen girls of the palace and told Majnu he could 
choose any one of them and to forget about Laila. 

Majnu looked at these twelve girls,- they were the most beautiful 
girls in the kingdom, but he said, "Where is Laila? They are not even 
the dust of Laila’s feet." 

The emperor said, "Either you are mad or you have lost all your 
senses. I have seen Laila and she is a very ordinary looking girl. Why 
are you saying that these beautiful girls are not even the dust of Laila’s 

Majnu said, "To see Laila, the eyes of Majnu are needed.'' 

But these eyes, the eyes of Majnu, what are they doing with 
Laila? They are imposing something on Laila which she does not 
have. These eyes are creating some dream about Laila,- these eyes 
are creating some maya, some illusion around Laila which she does 
not have. Laila, as known to Majnu, contains more of Majnu than 
of Laila herself. Laila is not even ten percent present, she is ninety 
percent Majnu. And there is a possibility that she is only one percent 
Laila and ninety-nine percent Majnu. What Majnu is seeing is his own 
projection, it is his own creation,- it is his own mind that is fabricating 
a dream around Laila s face. It is the mind of Majnu that is weaving a 
web, surrounding Laila with a fragrance, with beauty, with a melody. 

Man’s mind weaves illusions and then projects them from within 
himself, the way a spider takes the fibers from within his own body 
and weaves a cobweb. Just a support is needed from the outside — that 
is all. Even the spider needs a support from which to hang its web, the 
spider needs a wall or a door on which to hang its web. It just needs a 
support to hang it from, the rest of the creation is its own. 

I 274 | 

The End of Illusion 

Man too needs something around which to fabricate his illusion. 
Laila is no more than a support to hang it on. Laila’s appearance is 
nothing more than Majnu’s fabrication, his cobweb. Maya means the 
capacity that man’s mind has to create a dream around himself. And it 
is very interesting also that the spider then starts walking on its own 
cobweb, lives on it, dwells in it. The cobweb comes from within it and 
it also becomes its way, its path. It is its home, the means of its food, 
its subsistence. The cobweb will trap food for it, and the cobweb is 
the spider’s own creation. 

Sometimes it also happens that the spider itself becomes caught 
in its own cobweb and has difficulties getting out. Sometimes the 
cobweb becomes tangled up, some gust of wind may cover the spider 
with its own cobweb. Sometimes the cobweb breaks and the spider 
hangs in mid-air. The interesting thing is that the cobweb was a self¬ 
creation of the spider — it comes out of its own stomach — and it can 
also entrap the spider. Sometimes the spider is so trapped in its own 
cobweb that it is unable to get out of it,- the same cobweb which was 
its life can one day become its death. 

Maya means the capacity of man’s mind to weave a dream world 
around himself. This dream has much pleasure in it, otherwise he 
would not create it,- it also has much happiness in it, otherwise why 
would he create it? This dream also contains a lot of suffering in it, 
otherwise why would a Buddha or a Mahavira attempt to get out of 
it? The pleasure of this dream only lasts as long as we are dreaming it. 

And it is very interesting that the object around whom this dream 
is created becomes the reason of the dream shattering - because, in 
fact, this person is not at all according to our dream,- he has his own 
existence, his own dreams. You meet a person - very loving, very 
beautiful, charming - and you project your dream onto that person. 
It is not necessary that that person also projects his or her dream onto 
you. This is where lovers get into trouble. 

Lovers come to me and one of them asks, ”1 love him so much, 

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The Way Beyond Any,Way 

so why doesn’t he love me?" He doesn’t have to,- he has the freedom 
to fabricate his own dream. He may make you the hook to hang his 
dream on or he may not — he may have chosen some other hook. It 
cannot be forced upon him. He is weaving his cobweb from his own 
support, his own hook, and you are weaving yours on him. Trouble is 
bound to arise someday: at one time your web will feel like a bondage 
to him and at other times his web, woven around someone else, will 
be painful for you. Even if we suppose that two persons weave their 
webs around each other, then too a struggle is inevitable because each 
is weaving their own cobweb. Pain is inevitable, their paths conflict, 
expectations shatter and the dreams are broken. Each has his own 
plans to weave his own inner dreams. 

Understand it like this: if two persons are projecting two different 
movies from two projectors at the same time onto the same screen 
- two films on one screen - trouble is bound to arise. Everything 
will overlap and nothing will be clear. But here not only are two 
films being screened, but perhaps ten, fifteen or twenty persons are 
projecting their films on one screen. It creates confusion, nothing is 
achieved, and it is all sorrow and suffering. Every dream is shattered. 
At the end of his life the only treasure a man is left holding in his 
hands is disillusionment; only the ashes of shattered dreams and 
entangled webs. 

Mind has a double capacity: one is of projecting, of spreading an 
idea, a feeling, a fabrication, and the other is of becoming hypnotized 
by its own projection - a state of autohypnosis, of getting caught in 
its own fabrication. First we put beauty in a face, first we say, "You are 
beautiful" - but we ourselves are creating the beauty and then we are 
charmed by it! This is the other part, the autohypnosis. 

To this day, no definition of beauty has ever been found and there 
never will be because it is an individual projection, it is not a real fact. 
That is why as times change, fashion also changes and the criteria of 
beauty changes. Sometimes a flat nose is beautiful, sometimes a long 

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The End of Illusion 

nose is beautiful; sometimes a fair face is beautiful, sometimes a dark 
face is beautiful. 

We conceive of Rama and Krishna as being dark-skinned,- a dark 
color was most beautiful in those days. It is not known whether 
they were dark or fair, but a dark color was admired in those 
days,- in those times, darkness was considered to be beautiful. 
That is why we do not conceive of Krishna as being fair-skinned 
- even the names Krishna or Shyam are both synonyms for the 
color black. 

Nowadays we do not conceive of black as being beautiful, because 
during the past hundred, one hundred and fifty years, the color white 
has become dominant. So when we say that black is beautiful, it raises 
a doubt - although this will not last long, because American beauties 
are making a great effort to get a dark color, lying on the sea-beaches 
in the hope that the sunshine can make them dark. White - too much 
white — creates boredom, and white appears to be shallow. When a 
river is deep it becomes dark; a shallow river looks white, has white 
froth on the surface. A dark color seems to have a little more depth. 
Even the surface of a river shows its reality - if it is dark it is deep, if 
it is light it is shallow. But this idea changes with the changing times,- 
sometimes white seems really lovely, then we get bored with it and 
dark becomes beautiful. 

There are tribes who like their women to have shaved heads. We 
shave the heads of sanyasins so that they look unattractive, there is 
no other reason. A sanyasin should not look beautiful because he is 
leaving the world of desires and beauty. But there are tribes, African 
primitives, who shave the women’s heads — but not the men’s, 
because men can do without beauty. They shave the women s heads 
because a shaved head looks beautiful to them. Perhaps their idea is 
significant because they say, "Unless the head is shaved, the minute 
curves on the skull are not visible because the head is covered with 
hair. An ugly skull may be hidden. But when the head is totally clean 

| 277 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

then one can know the real shape and proportions,- otherwise one 
may be deceived." 

What is beauty? - it is we who project it. We project our 
conceptions,- it then looks beautiful to us and we are charmed by the 
beauty. First we project an idea, throw it on the screen, then impose 
our own feelings on the image — and then we become charmed by 
it. Have you ever been enchanted by yourself standing before the 
mirror? Then you would understand what I am saying. 

There is a Greek story about Narcissus, who looked at himself 
in the waters of a lake and became enchanted - he fell in love with 
himself. Then he was in great trouble because it is very difficult to 
search for oneself. How to do it? He looked everywhere, but he 
could not find the face he had fallen in love with. 

Freud has called people who fall in love with themselves 
narcissists. Most of us are very close to being narcissists - we are also 
like Narcissus. We are in love with ourselves, although we may not 
be saying it. A man like Byron fell in love with hundreds of women. 
He may not have admitted it, but psychologists say that the reason 
he fell in love with so many women was that every time the woman 
would tell him that he was very it was only for this 
reassurance, for this self-admiration. This search is nothing but a 
search to love one’s own self, thousands of women should say that 
you are very lovable ... He is only loving himself,- but when thousands 
of women say it, one’s belief in it deepens. 

When we love someone, we are loving our own conceptions, our 
own fantasies about beauty, our own feelings, our own ideals - we are 
surrounded by ourselves, every one of us is a Narcissus. But all these 
projections appear so real that it all seems to be true. 

If a cobweb breaks on one side, the spider again begins to weave 
from another support. We also do the same thing. If our dreams 
are shattered by one person, we catch hold of another as a support 
and again begin to weave our cobweb. One dream is shattered and 

I 278 | 

The End of Illusion 

immediately we begin another dream, but we never become aware of 
the fact that what we are doing has nothing to do with reality. 

Certainly it is not totally false, otherwise we could not have 
managed it ; it is not totally real either, otherwise we would not have 
suffered. It is in the middle - it is false, but it looks like it is real. This 
is what is meant by maya-. 

That which has no beginning but which ends... 

...That which never began, yet comes to an end. Memory fails 
as to when maya began. Memory fails as to when we fell into this 
cobweb. There is no way to know when we fell into this darkness,- it is 
beginningless. But an ending is possible. 

When someone asked Buddha how sorrow came into existence 
he replied, "Don’t worry about that. Ask how it can be finished with. 
Don’t ask about the beginning, you should ask how to end it - and I 
know how to end it." 

Buddha further said, "A man hit by an arrow falls to the ground, 
the arrow is stuck in his chest. I go to him to take the arrow out, but 
the man says, ‘First, tell me who shot the arrow. Why did he do it? 
When did he shoot it? Where did he shoot from? Is it poisoned or 
not? Is this the result of my past karmas?’ 

"I will say to him, ‘Don’t ask all these questions. I can tell you the 
technique to take out the arrow and how to end your pain.’" 

Maya is beginningless. It is very valuable that the Indian seers have 
been so courageous in accepting facts. Very few streams of thought 
are able to accept that something exists which is beginningless. The 
mind says that there must be a beginning, that somewhere, sometime, 
there must have been a beginning. 

That is why Christians have said that the world came into existence 
four thousand and four years before Jesus. They even fixed the date. 
Then they found they were in trouble because science has found that 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

the earth is very old — four billion years old. But man lives in his own 
dreams and logic. 

Christians were in difficulty when fossils were found dating back 
millions of years, and when scientists found metals and rocks billions 
of years old. But Christians are saying it began four thousand and 
four years before Jesus, which means only six thousand years ago. It 
became a problem, because civilizations were discovered which were 
at their peak seven thousand years ago. There are references which are 
tens of thousands of years old. The Rigveda mentions configurations 
of stars and planets which date back ninety-five thousand years. What 
to do with all of this? 

So now man has created a pseudo-logic: Christians have begun 
to say that although God created this world four thousand years ago, 
it was only to test the faith of human beings that he left things lying 
around which look millions of years old. He created those bones - 
because nothing is impossible for him. If he could create the whole 
earth, could he not create a bone which is a million years old, which 
can appear to be millions of years old? He put those bones there so 
that human faith and trust could be tested. 

It can only be a test of faith when all the reasons for distrust are 
present and, in spite of these reasons, they can go on accepting the 
idea of a creation of only four thousand and four years before Jesus. 
This is a rationalization,- we try to rationalize our illusions with logic. 

These Indian seers are in a way courageous, they accept the facts. 
Wise men say that the world had no beginning. Basically, India has 
the only people on earth who accept a beginningless phenomenon. 
No one else could accept it: somehow or other there had to be a 
beginning, even though it may be unknown to us - because how is it 
possible to have no beginning at all and yet exist? But this is a very 
superficial type of logic. The truth is that if anything is begun there 
must have been something before that, otherwise how could it have 
begun? Even the beginning needs something existent to begin with. 

I 280 

The End of Illusion 

So Indian seers say that even for the beginning, something must 
have already been present. This is why any concept about a beginning 
is meaningless. We may conceive of a beginning at any time, on any 
date - millions or billions of years ago - but whenever it began, that 
cannot have been the beginning because it is essential for something 
to have already existed in order for it to begin. That is why we accept 
that this existence is beginningless. The concept of a beginning 
causes an infinite regression,- it has no meaning and becomes like a 
game children play. For instance, we say A is born out of B, and B is 
born of C, and C is born of D - but if something needs to exist in 
order to give birth to the next thing, there comes a point where we 
have to accept that this whole chain is beginningless. Otherwise we 
just go on moving back inventing new words, and all those words will 
not solve the question - although they appear to answer it. But the 
question will remain there as before,- it only appears to be logical. 

For instance, one may ask, "What is the earth standing on?" And 
we can reply that it is supported on an elephant’s back and that the 
elephant is standing on a tortoise. But this only looks like logic, 
because if you have to stop somewhere why not stop with the earth 
itself? The earth is not standing on anything. If we have to say that 
it is beginningless, that it never started, why go so far on this stupid 
journey? Just accept the simple truth that something is beginningless, 
that it never began. 

But one very special thing about it is that something which is 
beginningless may have an end. Now it becomes even more difficult 
for logic, because that which is beginningless must have no end — 
this is a simple syllogism. How can a stick without a beginning have 
another end? Either both the ends exist or neither of them exist. It is 
a simple syllogism — very clear. Even mathematics will say it is wrong. 
If it has a beginning then it must have an end — thus, two ends. But 
you say that there is only one end — the last — and that there is no 
starting point. This cannot happen. 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

We also think in the same way. I will give you an example in order 
to understand this. During the past one hundred years what we call 
Aristotelian logic or linear logic has failed. A two-thousand-year- 
long tradition of this type of logic is no longer valid, it has failed 
because of science. The greatest hit was given by the discovery of 
the atom, because as soon as physics looked into the atom a unique 
phenomenon came to be understood which logic cannot grasp. And 
this phenomenon was that when an atom explodes, its basic particles 
- electrons - appear to be both particles and waves, simultaneously. 
According to logic this is not possible, it cannot be possible. Aristotle 
would have said that this is nonsense: it is either a particle or a wave. 
How can a thing be a particle and a wave simultaneously? A wave 
means that which is not a particle, and a particle means that which is 
unmoving, still and not waving. A wave can contain a particle in it, but 
a particle cannot contain a wave in it — a very simple fact. 

But a great difficulty arose. Even physicists were in trouble, 
because the whole of Western thinking had accepted Aristotle as 
its basis. For two thousand years it had never failed, Aristotle had 
always been right; that is why he was called "the father of logic." 
But this phenomenon of waves and particles, these electrons put 
Aristotle in difficulty. 

Now there were only two possibilities: either to follow Aristotle 
and to say that it could not happen, even though it was happening - 
that the particle could be at the same time a wave - to deny it and 
close our eyes... But how could the scientists close their eyes? It was 
happening! Or else the only way left was to forget about Aristotle. It 
had been right to follow him so far, because no contrary concept had 
come to notice which refuted him. Now this fact denied his logic. 
Which were we to believe - logic or facts? If we had believed only in 
logic, the whole progress of science would have been stopped. 

Scientists gathered courage and agreed to improve upon Aristotle’s 
logic because there was no way to change the truth. Now what to do? 

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Because a particle is simultaneously a wave, a new term — quantum, 
a particle-wave - which had never existed before, had to be coined. 
The Hindi language still has no term like that, this is why we have 
to say "particle-wave." English has created a new term - quantum: 
it means that the same thing is both, simultaneously. So Aristotelian 
logic fell into disrepute. 

The sages of India, in their spiritual seeking, also reached those 
spaces where facts defeat logic. This fact is one of such examples. The 
Indian seers accept that the logic is correct, that something which 
has no beginning cannot have an end, but we have seen it ending and 
we are helpless! We have experienced within us that maya comes to 
an end and it has no beginning. Now what to do? Our difficulty in 
the realm of the inner experience is like that of the West in respect 
to quantum mechanics. We too knew logic which we had developed 
long before Aristotle. Aristotelian logic developed across twenty-five 
hundred years, whereas the Eastern school of logic has existed for at 
least seven thousand years. We too knew that this is the rule of logic,- 
we knew quite well, but what to do? What to do if the fact does not 
agree with logic? We are bound to accept an illogical fact. This fact 
is beyond logic. 

Maya has no beginning,- searching and searching we found that no 
matter what we may call a beginning it cannot really be a beginning, 
for in order for something to begin, something has to exist before 
it — and again the search for another beginning starts. But when we 
go deep within, a moment comes when the whole entanglement of 
our projections is shattered and we are out of maya. Maya has no 
beginning, but it ends ; this we know as a fact through our experience. 
That is why the Upanishads are not logical proclamations,- they are the 
conclusions of our inner observation. Whenever a fact is profound, 
logic has to be dropped, there is no other way. 

Western psychology has now discovered a fact where ordinary 
logic has to change. I was just speaking about physics... Now 

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with Jung, Western psychology has also arrived at a new concept. 
We always thought that the male is male and the female is female, 
but Jung discovered that every man has a woman within and every 
woman has a man within, only the proportions differ. We call those 
people men who are sixty percent man and forty percent woman, and 
those people women who are sixty percent woman and forty percent 
man. The difference is only of quantity - there is no other clear-cut 
difference - so in every man there is a woman, and in every woman, 
a man. 

So Jung said: "We should say that the old concept - that a man is 
a man, and a woman is a woman — has been proven wrong. To call a 
woman manly, or to call a man womanly, is nonsense. Human beings 
are bisexual. The old division of sex is out of date." 

And Jung has put us in more difficulty. He said: "As I went deep 
into my experience, 1 found that the proportion is not certain, it 
changes many times in a day. A man may perhaps be more of a 
woman in the morning and more manly in the evening. It is also 
possible that you behave like a man today and tomorrow you behave 
like a woman." 

Have you ever noticed this? I know a man, a very courageous, bold 
man: yet when his house caught fire he began to cry, beating his chest 
and pulling his hair, more than a woman would have done. When I saw 
him weeping I could not believe that he was the same man. He was 
behaving altogether like a woman. If we follow the old logic we would 
say that this shows his weakness, his unconsciousness. But modern 
psychology would say that it is not weakness, it is just that the ratio 
has changed and his inner woman has become predominant. 

Sometimes we have seen women fighting and struggling like men. 
Sometimes a Queen of Jhansi, India’s Joan-of-Arc, behaves like a 
man, then we call her manly, believing that she is a special woman. It 
is not so, it can manifest in any woman. 

And many times it happens that when a woman’s male side 

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manifests she is more manlier than a man, because her manliness is 
fresh and virgin. It was dormant and had remained unused, like soil 
which remains uncultivated for hundreds of years and is then very 
fertile,- if seeds are sown in it the yield is immense, the surrounding 
fields yielding for so many years look arid. Thus, when a woman is 
manly, her hidden man, her dormant male, is very fresh and intense 
because it has remained unmanifested — hence the explosion. And 
when a man is womanly, his tenderness surpasses even a woman’s; he 
is more womanly than any woman. 

With the new psychology, linear thinking and logic failed. Logic 
says that a woman is a woman and a man is a man,- a man is not a 
woman and a woman is not a man, but the facts are that both are both. 
It is time to abandon the old concepts. 

Jung says that attraction is due to this, otherwise there would 
be no attraction. A unique phenomenon has been noted, that a man 
searches for a woman who resembles his inner woman. Love happens 
only then, otherwise it does not happen. 

And that is why it can happen that you can love a woman or a man, 
and then tomorrow that love is gone. Then you get angry, saying that 
perhaps this man or this woman was not right. But the reason is only 
that the rapport with the inner woman or inner man has been lost. You 
have a male or female image within which you search for, and when 
you are in rapport with that image, you call it love. 

Love is nothing but to be in rapport with someone who is 
harmonious with your inner image. But everyone keeps changing, 
that is why today’s rapport may not work tomorrow. It is there in the 
morning and may be gone by the evening. 

Wise men of India have experienced that which has no beginning 
but has an end, and that which has no end but has a beginning. 

Now 1 will tell you the second part: maya has no beginning but has 
an end, enlightenment has a beginning but has no end. 

Enlightenment, moksba, means to be free from maya. It has a 

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beginning — because one day you rise above maya — but it never 
ends. Mahavira became enlightened, and now this enlightenment has 
no end. 

Indian seers could comprehend that maya is the state which 
has no beginning yet ends: enlightenment is the other state which 
has a beginning but has no end. If we put both of them together 
the circle is complete. What is beginningless in maya, is endless in 
enlightenment. What is in the beginning of enlightenment is at the 
end of maya. The end of maya, is the beginning of enlightenment. The 
circle is complete. 

This circle is a spiritual experience, it is not logic. If one wants to 
have this experience through logic, it is like trying to walk with one’s 
feet and hands tied together. If you are then unable to walk, it does 
not mean the phenomenon of walking is false, it only means you are 
tied down with your own logic. 

That which has no beginning but which ends, 
which is present equally in what is seen and not seen, 
which is neither real, nor unreal, nor real-unreal, 
and which itself appears most pure, most flawless - 
that energy is called maya, illusion. 

It appears as flawless because while it is seen it appears, like a 
dream, very real and factual. When it disappears, it is not that it is 
seen with flaws, it just disappears. When it is seen it appears as a solid 
reality, when it is not seen, it is a complete unreality. This existence 
of maya between these two states has been called samara, the world. 

It cannot be described in any other way. 

Nothing more can be said about it. To know more one has to 
experience it. Enough has been said and nothing more is needed. 
More than this is not possible. The sutra is complete. If one wants to 
know more, one has to know through experiencing. 

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Illusion is ignorance, 

it is of no significance and is false. 

But to the deluded ones, 

illusion is real in the three states of time: 

past, present and future. 

Hence its true nature cannot be conveyed 
just by saying, "It is this.. 

There are three things here: ignorance — we do not know and 
that’s why illusion appears,- our ignorance is the basis for it. 

When a rope appears to be a snake, what is the basis for it? Proper 
recognition of the rope was lacking, therefore it appeared to be a 
snake. Had we gone closer to it, lit a lamp and looked at it, the snake 
would have disappeared; the snake exists because of our not-knowing, 
not because of the rope. 

Try to understand it correctly. The snake exists because of our 
ignorance, not because of the rope,- the rope is still a rope even after 
recognizing it. It was a rope even before we recognized it. But then 
a moment came when we saw an illusion in the dark, we saw it from a 
distance and ran away. It was dark and there was no snake,- where did 
this snake which we saw come from? It came from our not-knowing 
and from our memory. In our past we had seen a snake and the rope 
resembled that snake - the rope looked like a snake because it was 
dark, and we ran away. The fear worked, the memory worked - the 
old memory of a snake projected onto the screen, together with the 
darkness, worked. We did not go close enough,- ignorance worked 
and the rope became a snake. 

Sometimes the opposite also happens, sometimes a snake becomes 
a rope. It happened to Tulsidas. He secretly went to meet his wife, 
but he could not enter by the front door because not even a day had 
passed since she had come to her mother’s house to stay, and he was 
so shy that he could not go to the front door so he climbed up the 
back of the house. It was a rainy night and a snake was hanging down. 


The Way Beyond Any Way 


He took it to be a rope and grabbed it and climbed up. This also 
happens: if a rope can look like a snake, why couldn’t a snake have 
looked like a rope? 

The reason for this also lies in the memory - that it looked like a 
rope. He was in such a hurry that he had no time to look at what it 
was. He was afraid someone might see him, might catch hold of him. 
There was no opportunity to investigate it, to check it out, otherwise 
he could have gone through the front door. There was no way to 
take a lamp with him because thieves do not carry lamps. A deep 
infatuation, a deep desire to be with his wife.. .so the snake becomes 
a rope. The snake is still a snake - the basis is again ignorance. 

.. .it is of no significance and is false. 

Because that which is, is so very insignificant and trivial, you 
yourself make it big. You give significance to your dream and make 
it very important. That is why when your dream shatters, the person 
on whom your dream has been projected lose all their charm and 
become boring. The person is the same, it is only that now you have 
dropped your dream. 

Everything around us is so petty and trivial, everything you project 
your illusions onto is trivial. It is like a movie screen: there is nothing 
to it, just a blank white screen, but then you project so many images 
on it and then take great joy in them - you go almost crazy about the 
images! These pictures are only the play of light and shadow, only 
patterns of light and nothing else, but you go crazy about them. 

Now there are three-dimensional films. When three-dimensional 
films were first produced they looked absolutely real. So when a three- 
dimensional film was first shown in London, and a man on a horse 
came galloping along and threw a spear, everyone in the hall ducked 
their heads to escape the spear because it looked so real. The spear 
had length, breadth and depth, and when it was thrown it seemed to 

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be rushing towards the spectators. There was no time to remember 
that they were sitting in a cinema. They ducked their heads, because 
there seemed to be no difference between a real spear and this spear 
in the film. And what happened? - nothing, only a play of light and 
shadow. But the illusion is possible... 

.. and is false. 

Here, jd!se means that which is not, which does not exist, but really 
seems to exist. False is a synonym for maya. We produce pseudo-facts 
through maya. False means pseudo-facts, and maya is the energy to 
produce these pseudo-facts. 

But to the deluded ones... 

A deluded one is not a fool. Understand that to be deluded does 
not mean to be a fool. Even intelligent people may be deluded, 
great, learned people may be deluded. To be deluded does not mean 
to be stupid, deluded means to be submerged in maya, to be lost and 
hypnotized by maya. So a great pundit may be deluded - Tulsidas 
was a great scholar, and nothing was lacking in his scholarship, but 
he was deluded. 

In the East there’s a saying that a mother takes twenty-five years 
to grow an intelligent son, and it only takes two seconds for a young 
lady to make a fool of him. The mother wastes twenty-five years to 
make him intelligent - in study, in learning - and the mother is not 
aware that an ordinary young woman will fool him in minutes, and 
then all intelligence is lost. 

To be deluded does not mean to be a fool, to be deluded means 
to be in the state of delusion. Anyone may be deluded, and when one 
is deluded intelligence does not count. Someone may be intelligent 
one moment and the next moment all his intelligence may be gone, 

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as if he has become intoxicated, or like a man walking on the street, 
conscious, and suddenly he is given a tablet to make him unconscious 
and he begins to stumble and falter. 

We all have within us this potential of maya energy. When we give 
it the opportunity, it spreads its umbrella and we are covered by it. To 
be under the umbrella of maya is called delusion. 

So we have three words: one is maya — maya is an energy,- another 
is mithya - mithya means the false or pseudo-facts born out of this 
maya ; the third is moodhata — idiocy, delusion, a consciousness 
covered by maya. 

So when we call someone a moodb, an idiot, it does not mean he 
is a fool, it simply means he has made a fool of himself. He may also 
become intelligent. Great intelligence is not needed in order to get 
rid of this delusion. Understand this second part: it is not necessary 
for the person to be very intelligent to do it, it is possible even for 
idiots to get rid of their illusions — because intelligent people can also 
be idiots. 

Sometimes it happens that an unsophisticated village person 
attains to ultimate wisdom. It means he is out of the illusion, that is 
all. Kabir or Nanak, Taran, Dadu or Farid, all were illiterate people. 
Mohammed and Jesus were not knowledgeable in any sense,- they had 
no sophisticated, educated mind. They were very ordinary men, but 
suddenly they jumped out of their illusions and attained to ultimate 
wisdom, to become supremely enlightened ones. 

This ultimate wisdom dawns after the elimination of illusion, 
and ordinary knowledge, scholarship, comes after the elimination of 
ignorance, stupidity. It is easy to eliminate ignorance, it is eliminated 
with the accumulation of knowledge. Not to know about many things 
is called ignorance. A person who knows about many things is called a 
scholar, but the scholar and the ignorant one are in the same category, 
they differ only in quantity. The person who is ignorant knows less, 
the scholar knows more. The difference is of quantity, not of quality, 

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because both of them can be deluded,- at any time either of them can 
become deluded. 

The opposite of illusion is called wisdom and the opposite of 
ignorance is so-called knowledge. That is why knowledge can be 
learned but wisdom cannot. Knowledge may be borrowed, but there 
is no way to borrow wisdom. Knowledge is only an accumulation, but 
wisdom is an inner-revolution. Delusion can vanish. Delusion means 
to be hypnotized and overpowered by maya. The ability to move out 
of the influence of maya is called wisdom. 

But to the deluded ones, 

illusion is real in the three states of time... 

What are these three states of time when maya appears to 
be real to the deluded person? Everything has three moments 
of existence: when it is not yet, when it is, and when it again 
moves into nonexistence. Everything passes through these three 
dimensions of time. 

I saw you just now and 1 am not in love with you,- this is one state. 
Seeing you, I fall in love,- this is the second situation. Tomorrow, the 
love vanishes,- this is the third state. These are the three states of love 
- it was not, then it is, and it is not again. 

The sage says that the deluded person sees maya as real in all three 
states. When it is not there, he thinks love does not exist and that this 
is reality,- when it happens, he thinks it exists and that this is reality,- 
when it ceases, he again thinks it does not exist and that this is reality. 
None of the three are realities, they are just three states of time. Every 
experience of maya, every delusion has three moments: before being, 
being, and after being. Of all the three states, whichever is happening 
to the person at that time he believes it to be real. 

What does this mean? It means that if a person in love believes that 
there is love and that it is something real, then as this love disappears 

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he will believe that there is no love - and he will believe this with the 
same depth and conviction as he had previously believed that there 
was love. 

But he will not be able to see that this thing which has now 
become nonexistent possibly had no existence in the first place, or 
that something that now exists and was not there a moment ago. 
Could it be that its present existence too is nothing but an illusion, 
that between two moments of nonbeing only the delusion of being is 
happening? Because that which is, is always, and will always be there,- 
that which comes and goes or appears and disappears can only be an 
illusion, a trickery, a hypnosis. 

To the deluded ones it is real in all the three states of time. Hence 
it is very difficult to make a deluded person understand what maya is. 
The sage says: 

Hence its true nature cannot be conveyed 

just by saying, "It is this..." 

What is it that cannot be conveyed? - because when his love 
affair is over and he is told that the existence of this love was only an 
illusion, he believes it. But again, tomorrow, when a new love affair 
appears - then try to tell him this again! He will refuse. He will say 
that the previous love may not have existed, but this one does. Man 
has this recurring capacity to become deluded. 

I have heard about a man who married eight times. In a way it is 
good that there may be so many opportunities to marry,- perhaps he 
might come to his senses after repeating his delusion so many times. 
But man has an infinite capacity to be deluded. 

He was astonished when he married for the first time and became 
disillusioned after six months. Everything was lost, his dreams were 
shattered and he thought that he had chosen the wrong woman. He 
married a second time and after six months found that he had again 

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The End of Illusion 

chosen the wrong woman. The second woman proved to be the same 
as the first. He chose eight times and each time the woman proved to 
be of the same type. 

But even then he could not understand that it was he who was 
making the choices, so how could a new choice differ? How could 
it happen? It was still the same man who had made the first choice! 
His way of making a choice — his way of seeing, the projection of his 
illusions, his concept of beauty, his fantasies about love — all were the 
same the second time, and the third time and so on, but every time he 
thought that he had just picked the wrong woman. It never occurred 
to him that the chooser, the one who was choosing, could not make 
anything other than a wrong choice. It is only this wrong one who 
would qualify, who would fit his criteria. 

The difficulty with being deluded in the three states of time is that 
you never perceive that it is your own cobweb that you are weaving, 
you always blame the other. If I fall in love with you, I do not see that 
it is I who have fallen in love, I only see that you are so lovable, so 
perfectly lovable. Then tomorrow, because of these projections I have 
made, the trouble begins. I should only have said: "Because of being 
the type of person I am, my falling in love with you is unavoidable. 
You are not responsible for it — you are only a clothes hanger and 1 am 
the coat; I am hanging myself on you, you are in no way responsible 
for it. You are not involved in this. Had I not met you I would have 
searched for some other kind of clothes hanger that fits with me. It is 
just coincidental that we met and I hung my coat on you. 

But the person to whom 1 say, "1 love you because you are so 
lovable," is also not seeing the point that tomorrow there will be 
trouble. That person should immediately say, "Please, excuse me. 1 
am not lovable. I only appear that way to you. But soon a moment will 
come when all your love is gone and you will start taking your coat off 
this hook. And then too you will say it is because I did not prove to be 
a lovable person, that is why you are taking your coat back." 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

When someone says to you, "You are such a loving person that 1 
can’t help but love you," you don’t wish to deny it,- you feel that you 
are that loving person, and that is why the other loves you. Nobody 
likes to be a clothes hanger, so you are always willing to go along 
with the idea that you are a very lovable person and that is why he 
is loving you. 

But you do not know that you are inviting trouble. Tomorrow, 
when he gets bored with this hanger and takes his coat down, he will 
say, "This hook is rotten. I can’t hang my coat on it," then there will 
be pain. But in both situations he is doing the same thing - putting 
the responsibility onto the other and not on himself. 

In illusion, the responsibility is always put onto others, whereas in 
wisdom one feels responsible oneself. Hence if you abuse someone 
like Buddha, he knows that you are in search of a hook,- if you bow at 
his feet, he knows that you are in search of a hook. In either situation 
he never takes himself to be important. When you bow down at his 
feet he remains like a stone and when you call him names, then too he 
remains like a stone — because he knows it is your need, it has nothing 
to do with him. It is just a coincidence that he was there, it is pure 
coincidence. So when you say, "You are a bad man," he just listens 
knowing that the way you are you can only see a bad man in him, 
that is all. There is nothing more to it. And when you say, "You are 
the wisest man," then too he understands,- he knows that the way you 
are, he appears to be the wisest man to you. It is your eyes, he neither 
takes any pride in it nor any condemnation. 

But we feel difficulty with such a man. We feel uneasy, such a man 
throws us back on ourselves again and again. We desire to ride on 
others, to make others vehicles for us, to use the shoulders of others, 
and this man throws us back on ourselves again and again. 

Hence even a man like Buddha becomes only a cause for our 
distress as long as our illusions are there. Even a man like Buddha is 
only a cause for our suffering as long as we are deluded. No matter 

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The End of Illusion 

what he says or does, whatever we perceive in it through our delusion 
is going to be a cause for our suffering. Until we are ready to shatter 
our illusions we cannot see the real face of Buddha — because what we 
see is our own projection. 

So, to a deluded man nothing more than this can be said: that 
this is the situation - awaken out of it. Recognize it, explore it, and 
become conscious of it. 

Chapter - 15 

The Servant Has Become the 

I am never born. 

I am not the body. I am not the ten senses. 

I am not the intellect. I am not the mind. 

I am not even an eternal ego. 

I am without prana, the vital breath of life. 

I am without mind. 

I am ever the pure self-nature. 

I am ever the witness beyond intellect. 

I am eternally consciousness itself. 

About this there is no doubt. 

The real I am can only be talked about when the I is eliminated. We 
are acquainted with one I, and this I that we know is nothing but the 
sum total of all our illusions. We create this I, we nourish, feed, enrich 
and strengthen it and make it powerful. But because it is false and our 
own creation we are troubled by it, we become worried, anguished, 
because that which is not our nature always becomes a burden. 

Scientists say that tens of millions of years ago, animals with huge 
bodies existed all over the earth. An elephant is nothing compared 
to them, they were ten times larger than an elephant. Researchers 
investigating the evolution of life are having great difficulty in finding 
out why those animals became extinct. There are no apparent clues 

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The Servant Has Become the Master 

to some great calamity on the earth that would show the cause of 
their extinction. Their complete disappearance would have been 
impossible, even if there had been an earthquake or a volcanic 
eruption affecting the whole earth. So what happened? 

Recently, during the last fifty years, a new clue came to their 
minds. It is possible that these animals enlarged their bodies so much 
that they died under the weight of their own bodies. There is no 
other apparent reason that might have been the cause of their death. 
The bodies of these animals became so huge - bodies which were 
their means of life - these bodies grew beyond the limit and became 
the cause of their death. It became difficult even to move with such 
a weight and to feed this body became even more difficult as the 
demand for food increased. This demand for food went on increasing 
with the growth of their bodies. So the body is, in a way, a means for 
the continuance of life, a vehicle for life, but only to a limit; it can 
become fatal beyond that extent. 

1 have told you this to help you to understand that the ego, our 
I, is also an essential part and parcel of the system of our life. But it 
goes on growing and we forget that what we chose to use as a means is 
now using us as a means. What we wanted to use is using us, and what 
we created for our protection, we are now protecting at the cost of 
our lives. But it is very difficult to know when the boundary has been 
crossed, when the master becomes the servant to his servant, when 
the leader becomes the follower of his own followers. But it happens 
- it happens because the seed of this is intrinsic to its system. 

As I have told you, it is difficult to know when a leader becomes 
the follower of his own followers. To become a leader he has to 
satisfy his followers, and in trying to satisfy them he has to follow 
his followers,- to remain ahead, first he has to follow. If you don’t 
follow the followers whom you are to lead, they will not be ready 
to accept you as their leader. This is a very interesting happening: 
the leader has to follow because he has to lead. The leader gets lost 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

in the very process of becoming a leader, because he has to appease 
those whom he rules and without noticing it, slowly, slowly during 
this appeasement, he becomes enslaved. 

The same happens with the I. It is needed. As I told you it is 
necessary for our life-system, it is functional. But the I has no existence, 
it is just functional - functional in the sense that it is representative of 
and indicating towards something. It is like our names — one person 
is called Rama and another is called Krishna,- nobody is born with a 
name, the name is altogether a lie. But it is very difficult to function 
without names. There are six billion people on this enormous earth, 
and if we tried to live without names it would be very difficult, it 
would be impossible to know who is who. So we have to be labeled. 
The labels are false, but they are functional. 

When I say they are functional I mean that it is convenient. We know 
that this man is called Krishna and that man is called Rama - although 
no one is Rama and no one is Krishna,- all names are absolutely false. 
We are born without names and we die without names. We adopt the 
name on earth and we abandon it when we depart, but it has a utility 
in between. There is no harm in it, as long as there is an understanding 
of its utility. But you know how easily you can forget that the name 
has only a utilitarian purpose. 

When a man is ready to die for his name, trouble arises. He says, 
"It is a question of my name. I will not let my name be sullied even 
at the cost of my life." This shows that the name has not remained a 
mere utility. You are being used by the name,- save the name and you 
are saved, lose the name and you are lost. 

One evening, when Swami Ramateertha was in America, he 
returned home laughing and his friends asked, "What happened? 
What are you laughing at?" 

He replied, "Some people met me on the way and they began to 
abuse Rama. I laughed loudly because they were insulting Rama - as 
if 1 were Rama." 

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The Servant Has Become the Master 

His friends were new people, unacquainted with his way 
of speaking, so they asked, "What are you saying? Aren t you 
Rama? You are Rama. If they were insulting someone, they were 
insulting you." 

Ramateertha replied, "If the name is not just utilitarian and 1 
identify myself with this name then the insults are meant for me, then 
1 have to react. But I am well aware that a name is only functional. If 
tomorrow 1 become Krishna instead of Rama, it will not make any 
difference to me ; only the name will change and 1 will remain the 
same. I can have a thousand names and they will all be superficial. To 
insult the name does not mean to insult me. 1 am more than a name, 
and separate from the name. " 

If we can remember this also in relation to the I, then the 
I is also only utilitarian. But we are not aware of an interesting 
phenomenon: we call others by name, but if we call ourselves by 
name it would be inconvenient. If I were to call myself by my name 
it would seem as if I were calling someone else, hence the common 
way we describe ourselves is as I. We use a name to describe others 
and we use I to describe ourselves. Hence 1 works for each one 
to refer to himself. When we use 1, we know that we are pointing 
towards ourselves, when we use a name it is pointing towards 
someone else. 

That is why the people around Ramateertha found it difficult to 
understand him, because when he spoke he did not use the 1. He 
used to say, "Rama was walking down the lane and a few people began 
to insult him." He would say, "Rama is going to a town to deliver a 
speech." He did not say, "1 am going to deliver a speech." Listening 
to him, it seemed as if he was talking about someone else. 

There is nothing wrong in using the word /; there is no sin or 
no crime in using 1, it is practical and convenient. Only this much 
should be remembered: the 1 is for convenience and it is not real. 
Then what is the problem in getting rid of the I? The problem arises 

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when the label becomes our soul; as long as it is only superficial no 
problem arises. 

But we become so attached to labels that we paste these labels 
all over ourselves. All over we are only labels and labels, it becomes 
difficult to find the person. These merely utilitarian labels stick 
so fast to us that sometimes, instead of being useful, the labels 
become harmful. 

I have heard: 

Nasruddin was working in a big office. Some glassware needed 
to be dispatched and the boss asked him to stick a label on the box 
showing which way is up, so it would not be put upside down. So he 
stuck the labels on and the box was sent. 

When his boss asked him, "You did not forget to put on the label, 
did you?" Nasruddin replied, "Forget? I put them all over - they are 
visible from every side." 

Such is our situation. The label would have been useful had it 
been put only on one side, on the upper side, so that care could be 
taken. But Nasruddin put them on every side, visible on every side. 
Now this box cannot be taken care of because each of its sides is 
the "up" side. 

With us the utilitarian aspect also becomes suicidal. It could have 
worked, but the entity whose name it is, is forgotten and only the 
name remains. It would have been alright if only others were to fall in 
this illusion, but it happens that the person himself falls prey to this 
illusion and it goes deeply inside him. 

If all of us sitting here were to sleep here tonight and if someone 
were to call out, Rama," no one would hear this voice except for the 
man whose name is Rama. It clearly shows that even in sleep he is 
aware that he is Rama. The rest of the people would remain sleeping. 
They would not even be aware that somebody is calling Rama. But 
this man, even in deep sleep or sunk in dreams, knows that he is Rama. 

The name goes so deep, it goes on penetrating like an arrow in 

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the chest — the name enters like that, power enters like that, money 
enters like that. The ego is the accumulation of all of that which is our 
personality: name, fame, money and power — all this together creates 
the ego. 

The sage first talked about dissolving the ego, discarding this maya, 
and now he gives this very interesting sutra. He talks about the jump 
from I to thou, from thou to that, then from that to existence itself. 
Then he talks about brahman, the ultimate reality, and maya, illusion - 
and suddenly comes this sutra: 

1 am never born. 1 am not the body. 

I am not the ten senses. 

I am not the intellect. I am not the mind. 

I am not even an eternal ego. 

A journey was begun which started with the I, progressed to thou, 
arrived at that, and then came to empty existence. Again the I is being 
used, but now it is not the same I that was mentioned in the beginning; 
that I has been abandoned. Now we have arrived at another 1. This 
1 appears only when the previously known I is dissolved. This I is 
the real self. This I does not mean ego, it means the soul. We have 
not created this 1, it does not mean our name, fame, prestige, power, 
culture or education. This I means our existence, our being. 

Remember one thing: the I which is renounced, which we discussed 
renouncing, which is discarded, was our "doing", this second 1 is our 
"being." That 1 was our doing, this I is our being. So try to understand 
the difference between doing and being. This will give you a clear 
glimpse of the second I. 

There are things we do, which if we didn’t do them they would 
not happen. For example, if you don’t get an education you will 
remain uneducated; if you don’t learn a language it will be unknown 
to you. If you want to be a scientist you can become one, or if you try 

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to become a blacksmith you can become one - if you do something 
you will become someone. But there is something existing within you 
which is not your doing - it is your being. Your being is not your 
doing. You exist before your every action,- otherwise who would be 
doing it? 

A child is growing in the mother’s womb. The child doesn’t even 
have to breathe in the womb, it doesn’t even need to do this much. 
But try to understand this very interesting phenomenon: the child is 
existing, he is not breathing yet he exists. His being is, his isness is, 
his soul is,- the soul is totally present. 

Physiologists have always raised this question: When does life 
start? From when? If we think that life stops with the stopping of 
breathing, then life must begin with the beginning of breathing. 
So when a child cries for the first time after his birth and takes the 
first breath his cry works as a shock, a push to start his breathing, 
the heartbeat, now the mechanism starts functioning. When the 
child makes his first scream this is his first doing,- his first cry is 
his first doing. 

But the question is, whether the child existed before the cry or 
not. If he was not, then who cried? If he was not, then who took the 
first breath? He was, otherwise this could not have happened. So this 
thing that is existing before the first breath is our being,- that is our 
isness, that is our soul. 

Stretch it to the other side also. In the first case physiologists may 
agree with me about this phenomenon - that if nobody is already 
present before the first breath, then who is it who breathes for the 
first time? But on the other side, physiologists will feel more of a 
problem when 1 then say that when the breathing stops, that which 
was present before the first breath will still be present afterwards. 
It is not concerned with the stopping of the breathing, it existed 
perfectly well before the breathing, so it can exist perfectly well after 
the breathing has stopped. 

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You will easily understand the first argument: Who will breathe if 
someone is not already present? The second argument is that much 
more important: Who is it who lets go of the breathing if there is 
no being inside, other than the breathing? But the second argument 
cannot be understood as easily. If the first is understood, there is no 
difficulty in understanding the second. 

So let us get one categorization clear: there are things which we 
do. This is the reason why the more a person does, the bigger an 
egoist he becomes. Then one might say that blessed are those who 
are lazy, because there is not much "doing" around them on which 
they can build their egos. Still the human mind is very tricky: they can 
consider their laziness to be a kind of doing. They may say, "We are 
in the act of relaxing or non-doing." 

Whatsoever we do, we use it only to enhance our egos. Whatever 
we do, we strengthen our I. Our 1 is the sum total of our doing - the 
grand total. That is why the ego goes on increasing every day. Because 
of this children are simple and old people are complex. It has no other 
relationship to age except this factor, that the ego has had time to 
become stronger in old people. That is why old people can easily 
become quarrelsome, angry and irritable. This happens naturally; the 
children of today will also prove to be the same tomorrow, they will 
also become like this. 

There is a reason for it, but it has nothing to do with age, it has 
to do with the doing which goes on increasing every day. The old 
man has done too much. That is why old men always talk about their 
doings - 1 did this, 1 did that. What can children talk about? They 
haven’t done anything yet. Right now they are only existing; they 
are breathing, moving their limbs - this cannot create much ego. So 
children look simple and the reason for their simplicity is that they 
have not yet had an opportunity to develop their ego. 

That is why the sages say that when an old man again becomes 
childlike it is the ultimate flowering. Yet normally the situation is 

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quite the opposite: children become like old men and old men do 
not become like children. If an old man is childlike it is the ultimate 
flowering; if children become like old men it is the ultimate loss, the 
ultimate fall. But that is what is happening. 

We all try to help the child to develop his ego ; the child is also 
trying to do the same. Sometimes the child makes such an effort that it 
is incomprehensible, but if you go deeply into it you will understand. 

One day I was passing by the post office and I saw a small boy 
smoking a cigarette, a very small boy. He was wearing a false mustache 
worth one or two annas. The sun had not risen yet - it was just about 
to rise, and we were alone on the road. When he saw me he hid behind 
a tree. I followed him, and when I spoke to him he quickly put out 
his cigarette and took off the mustache. 1 went to see his father and 
saw that the boy was only trying to imitate him — he wore a mustache 
and was smoking a cigarette. So this poor child was trying to enjoy 
adulthood. And the imitation of his father’s walk was worth seeing - 
smoking and walking, and wearing a mustache! 

Fathers preach to their sons not to smoke, but they do not know 
that a cigarette doesn’t only create smoke, it creates ego as well. The 
cigarette has become a symbol of adulthood - only adults smoke! It 
is symbolic that only adults can smoke. If some minor smokes, people 
say, "Not at your age - first become an adult, then you can smoke." 
So the child thinks, "If cigarette smoking symbolizes adulthood, what 
is the harm in smoking? It will only cause a little bit of coughing, a 
little bit of trouble, a few tears in the eyes. I will get used to that, and 
with a little practice it will be alright." 

So children are trying to imitate adults,- the ego is trying to express 
itself. It will grow and it will expand. Our doing is our ego, our being 
is our soul. 

‘Being’ means that which we already are, which one doesn’t have 
to create. We did nothing to achieve it or to create it. How can we do 
anything for it? Being precedes all our doing. 

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Now we will begin to talk about the 1 which means the being, which 
means to be. We will have to express it in a negative way, otherwise we 
will not be able to understand it. We understand only the I which says, 
"This is my house. This is my shop. This is my position. 

Try to understand it. The vaster the "mine" the bigger is the 1. 
That is why the 1 in someone who says this is my nation, this is my 
religion, becomes even bigger. You have a small piece of land — then 
certainly you cannot have a huge I. How can you? Another man has 
a larger piece of land, and still another claims the whole country, the 
whole nation,- certainly his I is the biggest. 

The expansion of “mine" is the expansion of doing, of ownership,- 
the 1 also grows with it. So when your wealth is stolen from you, it is 
not only that your wealth is taken, something of you is taken away as 
well. You have been robbed and it feels as if your soul has gone. This 
feeling of having been robbed is not just related to your wealth, it is 
related to you because now your "mine" has diminished with it. Your 
"mine" has been trimmed along with your wealth,- some of your 1 also 
dies with it. 

Our false I is related to "mine." "Mine" is the empire, the kingdom 
in which the I lives. Using the metaphor of a lamp, it is the oil, the fuel 
of "mine" which keeps the wick of the I burning. If the energy given 
to "mine" runs out, the flame of the I is extinguished. 

Certainly, the discussion of the other 1 will have to begin with 
a denial. 

1 am not the ten senses. 

Forget wealth - it is outside,- forget fame - it is outside. 

The senses are very deep and inner, and yet: I am not the ten senses. 
The senses are still somewhat outside. 

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I am not the intellect. 

The intellect is even deeper. 

I am not the mind. 

I am something which is simply never created: I am not born. 

1 am not the body. 

And the final thing: 

I am not even an eternal ego. 

We have discussed one type of 1, the ego. This ego is not eternal, 
it just comes and goes, it forms and it vanishes. This last sentence in 
this sutra is marvelous. The first ego is transitory, it disappears, so we 
often wish to destroy this transitory ego just so that we can attain to 
some eternal ego. 

The religious leaders preach to people to drop this transitory ego 
because it is momentary. It is very interesting that they say, "Drop this 
ego, it is momentary, attain to the soul which can never be destroyed." 

Greed arises in our minds and we think, "This is great! Then we 
will attain an eternal ego. Let us drop this momentary ego, it will be 
left behind anyway, it is petty if I drop this one then I will attain the 
other one." 

The person in whose mind this greed appears will never be able to 
rise above the ego. Hence the sage gives a very revolutionary sutra. 
He says: I am not even an eternal ego. 

Don’t think that there is an 1 which will remain forever, the 1 is 
always momentary,- there is nothing like an eternal 1. The I dissolves, 
becomes a nothingness, and no ego of any kind is left. 

But our greedy minds are ego-obsessed minds. They perceive 
even the soul as nothing but some kind of a pure state of the ego. 

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When we say "soul" we see it as meaning an eternal ego - that the 
petty ego will be dropped but the real inner me will never be lost. The 
sage says there is no such I within, and only when you come to realize 
this will you know the inner one. 

1 am not even an eternal ego. 

This sutra is similar to Buddha’s word anatta, "no-self. Buddha 
used to say there is no self, there is only "no-self.' That is why it 
became very difficult for Buddha to grow roots in India. Buddha s 
concept could not have a deep appeal to people because he did not 
provoke any greed. 

Listening to Mahavira you can become greedy, even though he 
did not intend it. Mahavira says, "You will be in moksha, you will be 
in a state of pure, awakened consciousness." And the listener thinks, 
"So, 1 will still be there." Something has already gone amiss here 
between Mahavira and the listener. Mahavira says, "You will remain 
pure, awakened and eternal," and the listener has no idea of which 
"you" Mahavira is talking about. He thinks, "That’s great! So I will be 
there, I will survive." 

But the one who is speaking is none other than the 1 which he 
has accumulated. He says, "No harm, then there is nothing to worry 
about. Even if this house is left behind it is no problem, even if this 
money is left behind it is no problem, even if this body dies there is 
no problem, 1 will still be there." And this I is nothing other than the 
sum total of these very things. 

Buddha said, "You will not remain at all. Everything else may 
remain, but not you." 

A greedy person could not accept this statement. He would 
say, "Then what’s the use? Why should I lose everything and gain 
nothing? What’s wrong in a momentary ego?" 

And you say, "Because this pleasure is momentary." 

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Then he says, "Okay, if there is some eternal pleasure, I can take 
the risk." 

But then you say, "There is no eternal pleasure either." 

"Then I may as well enjoy these momentary pleasures." 

The greedy person says, "I accept that the ego is misery, it is 
painful, I suffer — but what will I gain if I abandon it?" 

If something bigger can be achieved, our business mind agrees. 
We are happy with the deal. The investment is not a bad one - leave 
a little and gain more,- leave the momentary and gain the eternal,- the 
drop disappears and the ocean is achieved. What is the harm? What 
is wrong in it? Our greed says, "The mathematics are clear, a risk can 
be taken." 

But Buddha says, "No, there is no self, the self does not exist. 
There is no soul within you, you are only ego. And ego is only 
suffering, therefore abandon the ego. Don’t ask me what will be 
achieved. Nothing will be achieved." 

So the seeker thinks, "Then I will hang on tight to what I have." 

Consequently, Buddha could not be understood, because he did 
not use the language of greed. Buddha may be the only man on earth 
who did not use the language of greed. This sage is also saying the 
same thing. He is saying: I am not even an eternal ego — 1 do not exist even 
to say I. This is absolute denial. 

I am not the ten senses. 

But do you understand the meaning of this? You might not 
comprehend what it means: I am not the ten senses. Have you ever had an 
experience without the senses? Whatever you have known, you have 
known through these ten senses. Just imagine: I am not the ten senses. 

It means your every experience is lost, you are left empty-handed, 
nothing is left. The love you have known, the respect you have 
known, the insults you have received, the flowers you have seen, the 

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beauty you have experienced through the eyes, the music you have 
heard through the ears, fragrances, everything will be lost; this touch 
- everything will vanish. Will you have anything left? 

When the sage says: I am not the ten senses, he means that whatever 
experiences of the ten senses you have accumulated you are not 
those. Then you are totally empty, only a begging bowl remains with 
nothing in the bowl, because everything had been put into it by the 
ten senses. 

It is like the River Ganges saying, "1 am not those rivers which 
have merged with me." The trouble that the Ganges will face will be 
faced by us. What is the Ganges without them? - it is a mixture of all 
the rivers and tributaries merged together. If the Ganges were to say, 
"Whatever rivers have merged in me, 1 am not those. All the waters 
which have flowed into me are not me" — would the Ganges then 
remain as a river? Only a dry desert would be left. 

We are also the sum total of those rivers which the senses have 
brought to us. Every sense has contributed a flow of pleasure within 
us. The eyes have brought seeing, the ears have brought hearing, the 
tongue has brought taste. We are the total of all of these. Remove the 
senses one by one - the journeys done by your feet, the achievements 
of your hands, the statements made by you through your words and 
heard by your ears. If all were to be removed, what would remain 
within? And the sage says: I am not the ten senses. So you may think: 
"Nothing may remain — but even then there will be enough intellect 
left to know that nothing has remained." But then the sage says: 

1 am not the intellect. 

Why? This is a very surprising statement: I am not the intellect. The 
denial of every other thing is understandable. There is not much of a 
problem in denying the senses because they are part of the physical 
body, but the intellect - thoughts and mind - are deeply rooted. 

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Actually, the intellect is born out of the struggle between the 
consciousness within and the world without. The intellect is a product 
of that struggle. That is why if you have no challenge in your life your 
intelligence will not flower. Hence, the sons of rich people remain 
unintelligent, there is no challenge to awaken their intelligence and 
no opportunity for its creation and expression. 

Just imagine that you immediately get whatever you desire. For 
instance, imagine that one day we could produce a kalpa-vriksha, the 
mythological wish-fulfilling tree on earth — and man is trying, man is 
trying hard - would the person sitting under it have any intelligence? 
Make a wish, and you immediately get what you want without a 
struggle, without a challenge — what intelligence would you need? 
So intelligence is like the sharpening of a sword. The sharpness of a 
sword is due to friction. If there was no friction against the sword it 
could not have a sharp edge. 

So one may have intelligence within, but it only grows and 
manifests after there is struggle without. That is why intelligent 
people are born in times of struggle,- when the struggle is over they 
disappear. The more challenge you have in life the more sharpness 
you will have, and if there is no challenge at all, sharpness is lost. 

Today, if young Americans are dropping out of schools, colleges 
and universities, the sole reason is that they do not need them ; all 
the conveniences and comforts of life are readily available. In order 
to obtain these comforts students used to have to sharpen their 
intelligence, to study against all odds and inconveniences, doing their 
homework by the light of lampposts on the street. Today they all look 
like fools. Today many American students are saying, "What’s the 
point of going to college? What is the point of studying?" 

It will not be a surprise if in the coming fifty years American 
universities become more and more empty - and they have the best 
universities. This is a strange speciality of human beings. In fact the 
struggle is missing, the challenge is missing. 

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Today, America has the best means for developing the intellect, 
but America s own level of intellect is not growing. Most of its 
intellect has been borrowed from other countries. America can 
purchase it, but for how long? This situation is now creating problems 
for other nations, and many countries in Europe have begun creating 
regulations that do not allow their intelligent people to immigrate to 
America because it is creating a brain drain. Intelligent people born 
anywhere are sooner or later all ending up in America; it is becoming 
unavoidable because most countries can neither provide the facilities 
for academic work nor as much money, prestige, nor the laboratories 
- none of it - as America can. So the brain drain goes on happening 
in all countries,- intelligence goes on moving away from the other 
countries in subtle ways. 

Just as there was a time in the past when wealth from all over the 
world was siphoned off towards London, now all the intelligence is 
drawn towards New York. And the exploitation of wealth was a trivial 
matter, no big deal, but the intelligence now being siphoned off is 
an important matter. And how long can America live on borrowed 
intelligence? America can attract the intelligent people from India or 
from England and so on, but then their children are bound to refuse 
to attend universities. When there is no struggle, intelligence does 
not grow. 

So the sage says: I am not the intellect, because the intellect too is 
external, the intellect too grows from an outer struggle. "No," the 
sage says, "I am also not this sharpness which comes from an outer 

I am not the mind. 

After all, what do we contemplate? We only contemplate some 
object in the outer world when it becomes of value to us. We think, 
we contemplate, we ponder. 

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Intellect is that system of logic which sharpens the personality of 
a man and makes him more efficient in his struggles in the world. And 
mind means the capacity to contemplate, think and ponder, which 
gives man entry into and the ability to reflect on the abstract, the 

Try to understand it like this: if you know or have seen the game 
of chess, you will know that the person who can imagine at least five 
moves ahead will become a skilful player. He has to imagine ahead: "I 
will move this way, the reply will be this, my counter reply will be this, 
and then this will be the move of the other,- then 1 will move this way 
and my opponent will move like this." 

One is thought to be an expert to the extent that he can 
contemplate ahead in this manner. Still those moves have not yet 
been made, and as yet the moves have not been countered, because 
they are not yet created on the other side. The capacity to plan ahead 
is called contemplation. But even that is external, the calculation of 
external moves — it is not concerned with the inner. 

When a baby is born it has neither intellect nor mind, there is 
only the potential. Then the potential becomes an actuality. How it 
becomes actual depends on the opportunities, circumstances. 

We are none of these. Then what are we? Then what is the meaning 
of our existence? This is only a negation - not this, not this, not this, 
not this. 

I am without prana, the vital breath of life. 

I am without mind. 

I am ever the pure self-nature. 

1 am ever the witness beyond intellect. 

I am eternally consciousness itself. 

About this there is no doubt. 

"I am never born, always without vital breath of life, and without 

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the mind..I just told you, the vital breath of life is that which starts 
as soon as the child breathes. This is how yoga came to search for 
techniques which would enable one to live just as a child can exist 
without breathing. Why should there be a problem in controlling our 
breathing in such a way that we can also exist without it? Yoga found 
such techniques, and from its understanding that, as a child can exist 
without breathing we should also be able to do so, a practical method 
was created. 

Yoga did much work on pramyoga, the discipline of the vital breath, 
and with very, very slow exhalation tried to bring it to that neutral 
state in which a child is before his first breath, or in which he would 
be after his last breath. 

There was a yogi in South India called Brahmayogi. Suddenly, in 
1930, his name spread all over the world, because he could suspend 
his breathing for ten minutes. When he gave his first performance at 
Calcutta University ten doctors, the most intelligent medical brains of 
Calcutta University, were gathered around him. Brahmayogi had told 
them to write his death certificate in case he were to die during the 
course of the experiment. All ten doctors signed his death certificate 
when his breathing stopped because all the symptoms of death were 
apparent, according to medical science. 

But after ten minutes this yogi came back to life. When he folded 
up the certificate and was putting it in his pocket, the doctors asked 
him to return the certificate and said, "Are you going to sue us, take 
us to court or what? If so, we will be in great trouble." 

Ten doctors had certified that this man had died. But his breathing 
revived. Brahmayogi used to say, "I bring the breathing to the point 
where it is in a child just before birth, until just moments before 
the birth. Slowing down, more and more and more, the breathing 
comes to a stop, and with the stopping, the heartbeat and the pulse 
also stop." 

But the soul is still there, otherwise who would come back? This 

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man came back. He performed this experiment in Rangoon and in 
Oxford also. 

The doctors told him, "If you are right and we have not been 
tricked in some way, we will then have to change our definition of 
death. Up to now we were certifying a man dead who showed all the 
clinical symptoms of death. We have certified many people as dead; 
now one cannot know how many of them were actually dead or not. 
Now there no longer seems to be a way to double check it!" 

The truth is that none of them were dead. If we take the meaning 
of death as annihilation, none of them were annihilated. The only 
definition of death that we have is that the mechanism which used 
to breathe is no longer capable of breathing. Brahmayogi is doing 
it the other way ; the mechanism is capable but he is not breathing 
anymore. The dying man is in the opposite situation: he wants to 
breathe but the mechanism is no longer capable. If one of the above 
two are missing, breathing will stop: either the mechanism becomes 
incapable, or the person does not want to breathe. 

For brief moments, we also stop our breathing - anyone can. But 
if we can stop even for a moment, for that moment we have managed 
without the vital breath. And if we can manage without it for even one 
moment, we can manage just as well for ten moments,- it is not a big 
thing. Then it is only a matter of practice. 

Without vital breath.. without mind. 

We are, even when we do not think. Even in deep sleep, when all 
thoughts disappear and dreams disappear, we still are. 

Now scientists say that even if they take out a man’s entire brain 
his isness is not destroyed, he is still there. Mind is not essential in 
order to exist. In fact we have to sleep daily because we get so tired of 
the mind that it is necessary to leave it behind for a while, otherwise 
we feel old and stale. 

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I am not the mind.... 

1 am ever the witness beyond intellect. 

One can try to be a witness using the mind. Whenever you are 
practicing being a witness, you are doing so intellectually. You say, I 
will remain a witness, 1 will try to be a witness." 

All effort, all endeavor belongs to the mind. No one can be a 
witness through the mind; witnessing is only possible when the mind 
dissolves. The mind can never become a witness. Try to understand 
it carefully. 

The mind cannot remain without judgments, and witnessing 
means not to judge. Witnessing means that if I see a flower, I remain 
just seeing it ; neither does the thought that it is beautiful arise in my 
mind nor the thought that it is ugly,- neither does the thought arise 
that it is a roseflower nor the thought that it is jasmine; neither does 
the thought to pluck it arise nor to leave it — mind does not come in 
between. The flower is there and I am here,- nothing arises in between, 
no thought waves come in between. It is all an emptiness, a void in 
between - the flower there and I here. Only then am I the witness. 

If you say to yourself in a conceited way, "Alright, this moment I 
am a witness to the flower," even as you are saying this you are related 
to this thought and not to the flower. And if in seeing the flower a 
small flash comes in that "It is beautiful" — not even words, just a 
flash - then too the mind has entered. The mind cannot exist without 
making judgments. 

In fact, the very function of the mind is to judge. You will have to 
judge for or against, this side or that. You will have to be somewhere 
- with the mind you cannot be neutral. And you can only be a witness 
when the mind ceases to do anything. 

I am ever the witness beyond intellect 

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You see, but you don’t think, you are, but you create no opinions. 
Consciousness is there in its totality, but no shadow of thought falls 
over it. 

I am eternally consciousness itself. 

It is not that sometimes you are conscious and sometimes you are 
unconscious,- you are always consciousness. 

With effort we can sometimes be conscious for a moment. A man 
puts a dagger at your chest and you are conscious for that moment,- 
lifetimes of sleep are gone in a moment. The sharp edge of the dagger 
has cut through the darkness deep within, transcending all the five 
bodies, all the senses and all thoughts, you are just a witness. 

There is a sect of Zen monks in Japan who teach meditation 
through swordsmanship. They say meditation cannot be obtained for 
less than this, that man is so lazy and sleepy that unless there is a 
sharp sword in front of him no meditation can happen. The training 
centers for swordsmanship are called meditation centers. Above the 
entrance it says "Meditation Center," but going inside you will be 
surprised to see that they are practicing with swords. You cannot even 
conceive what a sword might have to do with meditation. 

Japan has given birth to a very special kind of warrior called 
samurai. A samurai is a soldier who combines meditation with the 
sword. Nowhere else on the earth are there soldiers like the samurais. 
The Rajput soldiers in India are also nothing compared to these 
samurais because the essential part of the training of a samurai is 
that the intellect, the mind, should not be there when he is using the 
sword. This is the training: when you take the sword in your hand 
the mind should not be there to interfere. Let the sword do its work 
without the interference of the mind. 

When two samurais are engaged in combat, victory and 
defeat are very difficult to decide. The swords move without any 

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interference from their minds. The samurai masters say: "You miss 
a movement only when your mind comes in and that s when you 
make a mistake, because that’s when you become unconscious in 
the act." 

You are in a pitched battle, in a sword fight, and suddenly a 
thought flashes in your mind that you have left the tap in your house 
running,- you are gone! That is how thoughts come in - not only in 
a sword fight but also when you are sitting in the temple to worship 
or to meditate. You miss the moment! You are transported away from 
there. "It is during this gap," the samurai masters say, "that the sword 
of the other will have penetrated your body. The sword should move, 
but there should be no thoughts within. 

Then who will be there within? There will be only the witness 
within - only the witness. It will witness the sword moving, and even 
if the sword penetrates the body it will witness that too — but only if 
there is a witness,- then it will see the sword penetrating within. The 
sword will have nothing to do with the witness, the sword can never 
penetrate the witness. 

That is why Krishna said: "Nainam chbwdanti sbastrani — weapons 
cannot cut it, fire cannot burn it." Burn it in fire and it remains 
unburned, untouched. 

I am eternally consciousness itself. 

Not just occasionally. We only become conscious occasionally, in 
an accident or in some intense moment. It is very interesting that 
whenever we are totally conscious, that is when we get a little glimpse 
of bliss in life. Rarely, very rarely — maybe once or twice in life — a few 
such moments occur when we suddenly get a glimpse, which we never 
get again. The reason we get a glimpse is the same: for some reason 
we become conscious within. Any reason, the reason can be anything. 
This consciousness which flowers for a moment, this peak we never 

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achieve again. And we go on searching for another experience like 
this for the rest of our lives. 

It can happen anywhere. It can happen in the deep still moments 
of a night when there is no thought within, when only the sound of 
a cricket remains,- the bliss experienced in that moment was never 
known before. In the morning, seeing the sunrise, it can sometimes 
happen. The sun goes on rising and as you watch it there is no thought 
within,- not even this much thought, that "It is the sun" ; not even the 
word sun comes to mind. In that experience the sun becomes divine. 
That experience can never be forgotten. 

Such things happen accidentally, sometimes. But to cause it to 
happen through using a method is called meditation — that one 
remains aware. But there is effort in it. 

The sage says: "When effort is not there and the awakening is 
natural — that is my real nature, that is what 1 am." 

About this there is no doubt. 

There is no doubt about it. Why? - because this is not a theory. 
The sage says: "There is no doubt about it because I am saying it from 
my own experience." 

Vivekananda went to Ramakrishna and asked, "Does God exist?" 

Ramakrishna did not say yes or no. He did not sit down to discuss 
or explain, no, all he said was, "Do you want to meet him right now, 
this very moment?" 

Vivekananda has said somewhere, later on, "I hesitated for a split 
second,- did I want to see God right now or not? That man did not 
hesitate, and the question I had asked was a difficult one: ‘Does God 
exist?’ He ought to have hesitated, because the question is very 
complex. Nor is it all that easy to say yes or no. If you say yes you 
will have to prove it, and who has been able to prove the existence 
of God?" 

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Perhaps many people are not able to accept God just because no 
one has so far been able to prove his existence - otherwise atheists 
would have disappeared long ago. But they have not disappeared, 
so this only goes to show that God is something which cannot be 
proved — otherwise nonbelievers would have disappeared long ago. 

The earth has produced so many great theists, and yet the atheist 
remains unaffected; the theists do not even create an iota of change 
in him, he remains as he is. Even if we could bring all the theists 
together, they could not change a single atheist. What could be the 
reason for this? There is only one reason; an atheist demands proof 
and there is no proof — hence the helplessness. 

So Vivekananda had thought, "Ramakrishna will be in trouble,- he 
is only a villager, illiterate. He has studied only up to the second grade 
in Bengali language, so what could he know?" 

Vivekananda was an atheist, and he was intelligent, well-educated, 
one of the greatest geniuses Bengal could produce, an expert in 
debating, in logic, in Aristotle and Indian philosophy. Vivekananda 
asked this villager who was just a rustic, and this villager had put 
Vivekananda into a state of hesitation. He asked Vivekananda if he 
was ready to meet God — right now! 

There is a special quality in this answer, and that is the 
confidence of Ramakrishna - as if God is there, right in the next 
room, and it is only for you to ask and you can meet him. This man 
knows beyond a doubt - no doubt at all. Doubt can only not exist 
when there is experience. 

So the sage says: About this there is no doubt. 

All that he is trying to say is: ”1 have known it and 1 am saying this 
from my existential experience. This is not a theory or a dogma. This 
is not my thought, my idea, my concept. I have known it to be so ; I 
have lived it as such." 

Prior to this Vivekananda had gone to the father of Rabindranath 
Tagore, Devendranath. He was a Maharishi, a reputable man. 

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Ramakrishna was nothing at that time,- Maharishi Devendranath was 
a great man. First, he was from the respected family of Tagore - his 
father was called a king - and then he was wise and respected as a 
great sage. He had the personality of a sage. 

Most of the time he lived on a houseboat on the river. So at 
midnight Vivekananda swam over to the houseboat. Soaking wet, 
in the dark of night, he pushed the door open. It was not latched, 
because there was no question of anyone coming in the middle of 
the night, and who would come onto a houseboat? That was one of 
the reasons why he was living on the houseboat. Vivekananda pushed 
open the door and entered. Devendranath was sitting in meditation 
with closed eyes. The push on the door, the sound, the shaking of the 
houseboat, the door opening - and suddenly there was this young 
man catching hold of Devendranath by his collar, shaking him and 
asking, "Does God exist?" 

Devendranath said, "Just sit down and calm down your breathing. 
Is this the time to ask such questions? Is this the time to visit? What 
kind of manners are these?" 

Vivekananda said, "When the house is on fire who cares about 
manners? Answer my question, forget about everything else - no 
formality is needed: Does God exist?" 

There was a flash of hesitation within Devendranath,- it was difficult 
to say yes, and no was out of the question. But how to answer a man 
like this, who says that the house is on fire, who has come swimming 
to your house at midnight, soaking wet - even his face could not be 
seen clearly - asking about God? Is this the way of a seeker? 

He said, "Sit down, I will explain." 

But Vivekananda jumped back into the river. The sound of the 
splash... Maharishi Devendranath called out, "Young man, wait!" 

Vivekananda replied, "Your hesitation has said everything - there 
is nothing left to wait for." 

That is why the sage says: About this there is no doubt. 

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This hesitation was enough to reveal his doubt. But Vivekananda 
bowed down his head before Ramakrishna - in front of a villager, a 
rustic, he bowed down. Devendranath was one of the wisest men, but 
there had been hesitation. 

The mind always hesitates,- it is only experience that is without 
hesitation. No matter how much you can think, hesitation will remain. 
How can there be no hesitation using the mind? You can go on 
thinking, believing and convincing yourself endlessly that God exists, 
but some voice within you will go on saying: "You have not known 
it yet, you have not attained to it yet, you have not experienced it 
yet." Even if logic and evidence have all said to you that God exists, 
yet your inner experience will go on reminding you that you are still 
empty and unfulfilled. 

That is why the sage says: 

About this there is no doubt. 

I am saying a truth which 1 have experienced. 

Chapter - 16 

Beyond All — the Witness 

I am neither the doer nor the experiencer. 

I am but a witness to all manifestation. 

It is because of my closeness to them that the body, etcetera, appears 
to be conscious, and begins to function accordingly. 

I am the unchanging, the eternal. 

I am ever the home of bliss, of purity and knowing. 

I am almighty. 

I am the clear soul 

which is present in all sentient beings as a witness. 

About this there is no doubt. 

In order to enter into the depth and profundity of existence, it is 
essential to understand a few more negations. Yesterday we discussed 
that you are neither the body, nor the senses, nor the mind, nor the 
intellect,- you are consciousness. But still more subtle layers exist, 
and those subtle layers are created only because of their proximity 
to consciousness. 

Consciousness illuminates whatsoever is in its proximity. It is like 
a light which shines on everything that is nearby. We light a lamp, 
and instantly everything within its field is illuminated. Similarly, 
everything within us near to consciousness is illuminated. And it is 
with this illumination that the troubles begin. 

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Try to understand it like this: when there is no light, it is dark 
and nothing is visible. Then a lamp is lit. If the light of the lamp had 
any consciousness it would be under the illusion that all that became 
illuminated, visible, is part of the lamp itself. The light would be under 
the illusion that all that became illuminated is not separate from it, 
because "When I am not, it is not there,- neither the walls nor the 
furniture of the room are visible. When I am not there, there is nothing. 
Things only exist when I am there. Naturally, it is simply logical that 
the existence of everything is contained within my existence." 

It is the same with consciousness. If there were no consciousness 
there would be neither the five bodies, nor the mind, nor the 
intellect, nor the senses - nothing! Everything comes into existence 
with the emergence of consciousness. If consciousness becomes 
unconscious, if it disappears in a deep sleep, then even the body is 
not felt, the mind is not perceived. That is why when you have to 
have an operation a layer of deep unconsciousness is created around 
your consciousness so that you will not feel pain even if your hand 
is amputated. You would not even know if your whole body was cut 
into pieces, because the light of the lamp which illuminated all this is 
covered with unconsciousness. 

So consciousness, illuminating anything that is close to it, becomes 
identified with it. Because of the proximity it feels that "I myself 
am this." This is the whole mistake of identification. And then we 
start behaving according to whatsoever it is that we have identified 
ourselves with. 

For example, we breathe,- if our consciousness leaves the body the 
breathing will leave too. The process of breathing runs only when the 
light of consciousness falls on it. Naturally, consciousness identifies: 
"When I am, breathing is, and when 1 am not, breathing is not. So I 
must be the breathing itself, I myself am the breathing." 

But this is not true. You have never taken a breath. Breathing 
happens: you are only a witness. Certainly, awareness of breathing 

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happens only when you are, but the process of breathing as such is 
totally separate,- it can go on even if you are unconscious. And now 
scientists claim that even if you are dead they can keep the breathing 
process going with the help of machines. 

Breathing is a separate mechanism, a separate system. You are only 
the awareness of it. Have you ever taken a breath? If it were you who 
had been breathing you would have died long ago, because if you had 
forgotten to breathe for a while everything would have fallen apart. 
And man may go on committing all kinds of other mistakes — and that 
is okay - but if he forgets to breathe that will not do. That is why it is 
not you who is breathing, it happens on its own,- you are not the doer, 
you are only a witness to it. The blood circulates in your body, you do 
not circulate it. You are not the doer. The heart beats - you are not 
the doer, you are only a witness. 

If you understand this phenomenon about the heart, the breathing, 
the pulse beat and the circulation of the blood, it will not be very 
difficult to understand how the mind also works. You do not make it 
work, it too is a mechanism - mind too is a mechanism. 

A person is possessed by sexual desire,- if he thinks that he is doing 
it he is mistaken. It is just happening. This too is nothing more than 
a few glands, some fluids being released in the glands. When the sex 
glands have matured at the age of fourteen they make sexual desire 
possible. If you were to remove these glands, the possibility of any 
sexual desire would be gone. You are not even the creator of your 
sexual desires, and that is why it is very difficult to get rid of them. 
How easy it would have been if you were creating them. If you had 
been the creator of your sexual desires then there would have been no 
difficulty, you would have just said, "I don’t want this," and it would 
be finished. But you go on saying that you will not have any sexual 
desire and still it goes on arising, it doesn’t leave you. Why? If you are 
the doer, the creator, then where is the difficulty? 

The difficulty is that you are not the doer and, believing yourself to 

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be the doer, you get into double trouble. First you consider yourself 
to be the doer, and then because of it you think that if you wish you 
can be the controller also. You think, "I am myself the doer and I can 
stop sexual desire if 1 wish to." But it doesn’t stop,- you can neither 
arouse it nor can you stop it. 

Does that mean you can never get rid of sexual desire? Yes, 
you can be free of it at this very moment. If the feeling of the doer 
vanishes, and if you remain only a witness, then you are freed from 
desire. Desire remains on one side, the mechanism remains separate 
from it and you stand aloof,- a gap happens in between. 

One more thing needs to be understood. You are not the doer 
with regard to this mechanism, but your presence is necessary for it 
to function - just your presence. You are not the doer. 

The sun when it rises in the morning makes no effort to open each 
bud individually. Perhaps it is not even aware of how many flowers 
have bloomed because of it, how many birds have started singing 
their songs. It is not the creator of all this, still it could not have 
happened without the sun. If the sun doesn’t rise tomorrow morning 
the birds will not be able to sing, the flowers will not bloom and the 
lotuses will remain closed. Yet the sun is not the doer because there 
is no question of doing. Its rays don’t come and open each bud, one 
by one. Its rays don’t reach out to create songs in the throat of each 
bird. There is no effort, only its presence works. 

Science accepts one fact which is called a "catalytic agent." 
Science says that there are times when just the presence of a catalytic 
agent creates an effect. For example, water is comprised of hydrogen 
and oxygen together, but if you mix hydrogen and oxygen the result 
will not be water. You can go on mixing them, but they will not make 
water as the catalytic agent is not present. Everything else is present 
- because water contains nothing other than hydrogen and oxygen. 

This phenomenon of the catalytic agent should be properly 
understood because it will be very helpful in understanding the 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

witness. When we analyze water we find nothing except hydrogen 
and oxygen — only these two things. Then why don’t we get water 
when we mix hydrogen and oxygen? These two should become 
water, but it doesn’t happen unless electricity is present. That is why 
when lightning is flashing in the sky during the rainy season it is a 
sign of rain, otherwise the clouds would just continue wandering and 
there would be no rain. Science has remained puzzled as to what 
part electricity plays, but it has been found not to have any direct 
contribution in the creation of water. That is why when we analyze 
water we don’t find any electricity. Then what does the electricity do? 
It does nothing, but its presence is essential; water would not happen 
without its presence. So electricity has worked as a catalytic agent. 

A catalytic agent means that the phenomenon cannot happen 
without it being present, and yet it is not doing anything. So breathing 
is not possible without the presence of consciousness, the heart will 
not beat without the presence of the consciousness, the intellect will 
not work without the presence of the consciousness. And yet the 
consciousness is not the doer. 

But this creates within us the illusion of being a doer- "If something 
could not happen without me, then I am the doer" - because we 
can understand only two concepts in our minds: firstly, "If 1 am the 
doer, then things happen," and secondly, "If I am not, then they don’t 
happen." So the natural conclusion is that "I am the doer." 

We don’t know the third dimension at all, when only the 
presence of the consciousness works. When we assume the role of 
the doer because of this presence, then this becomes our bondage. 
If this presence remains an unidentified presence, then that is the 
witness. We only need to know that we are the witness, that things 
certainly happen in our presence, but we are not the doer. When 
this is understood a distance is then created between ourselves and 
our mechanisms. 

Then many profound things happen because of this unidentified 

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presence. For instance, your sex center may try to assert itself, 
but if you remain a witness it will not be able to, because as soon 
as you become the witness you are disconnected from the sex 
center. As soon as you are a witness you have receded back into 
yourself and you have distanced yourself from your sex center. 
The proximity of the consciousness, which your sex center needs 
in order to function, is disconnected. The sex center can remain 
throbbing and calling, the sex glands can continue asking for sex, 
but your presence is not available. 

That is why amazing things sometimes happen. You are sitting 
there, full of sexual desire, your mind totally absorbed in it, and 
suddenly someone shouts that your house is on fire. Why is it that 
your sexual desire vanishes from the mind within a split second? 
- because the consciousness moves from there and becomes 
connected to the thought of the house being on fire. Otherwise 
try separating your mind from sexual desire and you will know that 
it doesn’t work! You cannot separate from it. But as soon as you 
hear the news of the fire — even though it may be a false alarm — the 
whole mechanism of your sexual desire comes to a standstill; you 
forget about it and it is finished. 

What happened? The presence of your consciousness shifted. 
An emergency has arisen, and now the mind cannot afford to be 
anywhere else. It moved away from the desire, and the desire 
disappeared in this very moving away. The mechanism of sexual 
desire was there, and you too were present within this mechanism — 
but then what changed? What has changed is that you are no longer 
present near the desire,- your consciousness has shifted from it, 
your attention has moved away. Freedom from sexual desire is not 
attained through effort, it is attained through effortless witnessing, 
because you are not a doer. 

So the sage begins this sutra: 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

I am neither the doer nor the experiencer. 

"I am not the doer" - this is somewhat comprehensible,- "I am 
not even the experiencer" — this is more difficult to comprehend. 
In doing, we are doing something on the outside, doing is always 
external, but experiencing is internal. When we are doing something 
we move without, and when we are experiencing something we 
move within. 

Experiencing is internal, hence it is nearer. That is why, maybe, 
you can understand that you are not a doer, but it is very difficult to 
understand that you are not the experiencer either. But one who is not 
the doer cannot be the experiencer, because deep down experiencing 
too is an act, a doing. To say "I experienced" is also a subtle doing. "1 
did" is a gross doing, "I experienced" is a subtle doing. 

So when the feeling of doing is outside, simultaneously the feeling 
of the experiencer happens inside — and the bigger the sense of 
doing, the bigger the desires of the experiencer. Therefore the bigger 
the sense of doing the more anguish in life, because the desires of 
the experiencer increase in the same proportion - the greater the 
passion, the greater the discontentment. That is why those who strive 
more are often found to be very miserable because they feel that they 
have done so much, but what did they achieve? What could they 
enjoy? In fact you go on doing and doing in the hope that one day 
you will sit back and enjoy. It goes on this way for the whole of your 
life, but the moment to enjoy never comes. 

There is another example of this proximity. You know when you 
are eating food that you do not create the hunger — hence you are 
not the doer. This is not so difficult to understand. You do not create 
hunger, it simply comes. If it does not come, there is no way to create 
it. So this much is clear, that hunger happens, we do not create it. 
We eat food because there is hunger. But we experience the taste - it 
feels good or bad, bitter or sweet. So let us accept that hunger is not 

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Beyond All - the Witness 

created by us, we do not produce it — it comes. We do not create 
hunger but we certainly do experience the taste. Taste is more subtle. 
Do we really experience the taste? Or does that also happen in the 
mechanism of our bodies and because of our proximity to it we think, 
"I am tasting it." 

Taste also happens in our mechanism. That is why when you 
have a fever you cannot taste anything. You are the same, but your 
mechanism is dull and incapable of experiencing it. Taste happens in 
the mechanism. 

Pavlov has done many experiments in Russia. There is something 
to be understood in this context from those experiments. Pavlov 
asks: "Is taste a pleasing experience or an unpleasant one? If a 
foul smell is released around you each time you are eating food, 
by and by eating will become a suffering. Or if you are given an 
electric shock through the chair whenever you are eating, after 
ten or fifteen days each mealtime you will be expecting the pain, 
‘Now it’s going to cornel’ Once this pattern is established, then 
even if you are not given the shock anymore you will not be able 
to relish the food." 

Many mothers have a problem with their children, that they do 
not enjoy eating. They make a thousand and one efforts, but their 
children do not want to eat. And it never occurs to them that the 
child is not at fault. In fact the way the mother may have behaved 
whenever the child asked for milk is what has spoiled its interest in 
food. An association has formed. Whenever the child has asked for 
milk, the way the mother responded has created a bad association, 
a bad taste. So the mother’s behavior has become associated with 
the food. 

In fact men’s attraction for women’s breasts is the result of their 
mothers’ efforts to discontinue breast-feeding. Every mother is trying 
to take her child off the breast as soon as possible, and the result is 
that he will not be able to forget breasts his whole life. He is looking 

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at breasts even in his old age. The attraction that men have to breasts 
is not without a reason. In his childhood when his mother’s breasts 
were everything to the child — they were his very life — they were 
taken away so forcefully that they will haunt his memory for the 
rest of his life. They are stuck in his mind and an idiotic obsession 
is born around breasts. People are totally obsessed. Only these parts 
of a woman’s body appear to have any significance. Painters waste 
their entire lives painting them. People call these painters geniuses, 
but all they are doing is painting women’s breasts; sculptors sculpt 
them, and poets write poetry about them. And these are the so-called 
intelligent people! 

That there is so much poetry, sculpture and paintings of breasts 
are only indicators of man’s insanity. Man is insane, but the incident 
that triggered all this was very trivial. That is why in those tribes 
where mothers enjoy breast-feeding, the people are not interested 
in breasts. In primitive tribes, in the so-called undeveloped tribes, 
mothers enjoy breast-feeding. 

And it is also interesting that the fact that children enjoy sucking 
milk is only half the truth, the mother also enjoys breast-feeding, 
even more than the child. If civilization and conditioning and all these 
things did not interfere, the child would be freeing her of a thousand 
and one tensions. 

That is why there is no such interest in breasts in primitive tribes. 
We feel surprised that these tribal women go around with their breasts 
uncovered. In reality we should be surprised that our women cover 
them. It is insane to cover that which is. And the amazing thing is that 
the attempt to hide them is nothing more than an effort to expose 
them, because if the breasts were completely naked no one would 
look at them. There is nothing in them to look at. Nobody looks at 
any of those parts of the body which are naked. Whatever is to be 
shown needs to be covered and decorated, then it attracts. It is a 
double game: cover that which you want to show, hide that which 

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Beyond All - the Witness 

you want to expose. This game creates the complexities which have 
their aftereffects. 

You are eating: whatever pleasant or unpleasant feeling you have 
while eating is created by your environment. Your mechanism receives 
impressions and upon these it decides whether what you are eating is 
good or bad. That is why people who do not eat fish are surprised to 
see how others can enjoy eating it. It has such a foul smell, but it is 
very tasty for those who eat it. 

So what is taste? It is a conditioning, a habit. That habit happens 
in your mechanism and you are present just behind it. You are so close 
to it that whatever is highlighted because of you, you take that to be 
yourself. Taste cannot be experienced without you, so you become 
the taste, you become the experiencer. 

In fact deep down you are just a witness to the taste. You recognize 
the taste as sweet or bitter — the one who recognizes it is you. You are 
not the sweet taste, you are the one who recognizes the sweetness. 
There are three happenings: you are eating a sweet thing, you are 
experiencing the sweetness, and you are aware of this experience. 
The one who is aware of this experience is you. 

That is why the sage says: 

1 am neither the doer nor the experiencer. 

I am but a witness to all manifestation. 

"I am only witnessing, and everything is happening outside of 
me." Consciousness only witnesses, everything else is happening in 
the manifested world. Everything is happening around you - you are 
only witnessing it. But we lose this witnessing when we either become 
a doer or an experiencer. And suffering begins as soon as we become 
a doer or an experiencer. 

I have heard about a house which caught fire. The owner of the 
house is crying and beating his chest. Then one of his neighbors 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

comes and tells him, "Why are you crying? I happen to know that 
your son sold this house yesterday and has also received the money." 

The tears disappear, the crying stops, and the man becomes totally 
normal. What has happened? The house is still on fire, the man is the 
same,- no change has happened. If we look, nothing has changed on 
the outside. By now the flames are rising even higher, he should be 
crying louder, but he is not - the identification has been broken, his 
consciousness is not involved in it. The house no longer belongs to 
him. The matter is over. 

But suddenly the son comes running, shouting, "Why are you 
just standing there?" The father is standing there as an onlooker and 
the son demands, "Why are you standing idle? The deal was only in 
process. The house has not been sold yet." 

Again the father starts crying and beating his chest, although 
the outside phenomenon is still the same. What has happened in 
between? What has changed during those few moments? The flames 
are still there, but why have the tears disappeared? His identification 
has been broken. 

When we take something to be "mine," we feel a closeness with 
it. When we know it is "not mine," this proximity disappears. This 
proximity, this identification, is the clue to all our joys, all our sorrows, 
to our becoming a doer and to our becoming an experiencer. 

I have heard that a man was staying as a guest for a night at an inn 
and left at four o’clock in the morning. After one year he returned, 
and again stayed at the same place. The innkeeper stood up in 
astonishment and said, "You are still alive!" 

The traveler replied, "What do you mean? Did you hear a rumor 
that I had died?" 

The owner said, "It is not a question of a rumor. The last time you 
stayed here all the people who had eaten here that night were found 
dead in the morning except for you, and because you had left before 
dawn we could not be sure about you,- the food had been poisonous." 

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Hearing this, the traveler fell down unconscious. 

This was a real fact. But what really happened? - the same kind 
of phenomenon that occurred at the time when the house was on 
fire. But in that case the identification was broken, while in this 
case the identification was created. The traveler identified with 
the idea of being poisoned, became unconscious and died. Fewer 
people die of poisoning than die of their identification with the 
idea of being poisoned. Poison in itself is not that effective, it too 
needs some identification. 

I was talking before about Brahmayogi, who used to stop his 
breathing for ten minutes. He could also contain any kind of poison 
in his body for thirty minutes. He would swallow it, store it in his 
stomach, and then release it through his urine. He was able to keep 
it inside for up to thirty minutes, but no longer. But he died in 
Rangoon, because he could not contain it inside for more than this. 
Thirty minutes is also not a short time! Chemists were all amazed and 
astonished, because this poison would even cause a person’s death 
the moment it would touch his tongue. One would not be able to 
remain alive long enough even to say something, not even to say, "I 
am dying" - and this man was able to contain even this type of poison 
in his system for thirty minutes! 

But he died while doing this experiment in Rangoon. It was a 
surprise. What happened? What was the secret? He took the poison 
at Rangoon University and left to go to the place where he was 
staying, but the car he was in broke down on the way so he did not 
reach there until thirty-five minutes later, he was unconscious. He 
was not able to contain the poison for this long, and the five-minute 
delay because of the car breaking down caused his death. That had 
been his secret, to reach where he was staying within thirty minutes 
and release the poison through his urine. 

Whenever he was asked how he could keep the poison in his 
system for this time he would reply, "I don’t become identified with 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

it,- I don’t allow any feeling that 1 have taken poison. But 1 am unable 
to prolong it for more than thirty minutes. After that length of time I 
will begin to be overpowered by it, and then it will occur to me that I 
have taken poison and that I could die. As soon as this thought comes, 
the trouble starts. The identification! Instantly this thought will bring 
my consciousness into identification with it and I will become the 
doer or the experiencer." 

If the consciousness can remain unidentified, anything is possible. 
If you have ever seen a hypnosis experiment you would have been 
amazed. If your body were laid across two chairs, stretched out, your 
feet on one chair and your head on the other, could you lie like that? 
With your feet on one chair and your head on another chair, could 
the middle of you remain straight? How could it stay straight? You 
would fall immediately. But if you are hypnotized and told that you 
are a board which cannot bend, then someone can even walk on you 
and you will not bend. What has happened? The body is the same, it 
has not changed. The bones still bend at the joints where they used 
to, yet someone is sitting on top of you and your body does not bend. 
What is happening? The identification has been removed. The idea of 
falling, the idea of collapsing which you have always carried, that you 
would fall if such a thing were done to you, has been removed and a 
new idea has been given to you. 

Ramamurti used to support an elephant standing on his chest. 
What was his secret? The chest is not so strong as to allow an 
elephant to stand on it — no one’s chest is, not even Ramamurti’s. 
It cannot happen, the very question does not ever arise. A man’s 
chest is a man’s chest, and no matter how strong it is, an elephant’s 
foot will smash it into pieces. Ramamurti’s experiments contained 
nothing more than the art of removing the identification. If you can 
remove this identification you can even have an elephant standing 
on your chest without your bones breaking. Bones break because 
the idea that they will break has become so concentrated in you. 

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The weight of the elephant itself does not break them - that is the 
most interesting thing. 

Lao Tzu has told a story about four persons who are sitting in a 
bullock cart. One of them is a drunkard and the other three are sober. 
The cart has an accident and turns upside down, but the drunkard 
remains unhurt and the other three all have multiple fractures. What 
is the drunkard’s secret? He should have the most injuries! Totally 
drunk with wine, you would think he was preparing to travel to hell, 
but his bones did not break. He is lying relaxed by the roadside, and 
the other three are screaming and crying with broken bones. 

The drunkard is not even aware that the cart has turned upside 
down, and that he could have broken his bones. This much awareness 
is needed to create the identification. He is unaware. He had not 
even been aware that the cart was moving or that it had turned over 
or whether he is now inside or outside of the cart, so an identification 
with his bones was not created and he remained unhurt. That is why 
children go on stumbling and falling. You see drunkards fallen over, 
lying on the road, but they are never seriously hurt. In the morning 
they again get up fresh and go on their way. You try falling and see 
what happens — without drinking! One time will be enough to make 
it difficult for you to get out of bed. 

It is the identification. Consciousness immediately identifies with 
the body when it sees an accident about to happen. So whatever you 
are thinking within that short space of time, it outwardly materializes. 
If the distance is maintained, it makes a difference, it makes a 

1 am neither the doer nor the experiencer. 

1 am but a witness to all manifestation. 

It is because of my closeness to them that the body, etcetera, 

appears to be conscious, and begins to function accordingly. 

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The body assumes that this is so. But this is only our belief. Our 
world is our belief, and unless this belief is broken we have no way of 
attaining to liberation. 

1 am the unchanging, the eternal. 

I am ever the home of bliss, of purity and knowing 

I am almighty. 

I am the clear soul 

which is present in all sentient beings as a witness. 

About this there is no doubt. 

As soon as the ideas of being the doer and the experiencer disappear, 
the phenomenon of witnessing begins. Or, to put it another way, as soon 
as witnessing begins the ideas of being the doer and the experiencer 
disappear. It depends on you where you want to start from. Start from 
anywhere, and the phenomenon starts happening. Cease to be the doer 
while doing, cease to be the experiencer while experiencing, and the 
witness starts emerging. Keep on trying to give birth to the witness, try 
to remain constantly alert and the doer and the experiencer will start 
disappearing. These are the two ends of one phenomenon. 

There are two ways: one is meditation, and the other is asceticism. 
Asceticism is a method which removes the experiencer and the doer. 
Meditation is a method used to become a witness, a watcher. Start 
from anywhere, the outcome will be the same. 

It needs to be understood why the ascetic moves into suffering. 
Why after all, does the ascetic choose to suffer? Why did Mahavira 
need to stand naked in the scorching sun? What need was there for 
his naked body to shiver in the cold? Why walk on rough roads with 
bare feet and deny yourself any food for months on end? Either he 
was mad, which was not the case... In fact it would have been difficult 
to find anyone as peaceful, as centered, as wise as he, so there is no 
way to call him insane. 

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Sometimes Western psychologists suspect that Jesus was a 
madman, but even they cannot have had doubts about Mahavira. 
Some of Jesus’ statements are such that he appears to have been 
mad. For instance: “I am the only begotten son of God, I am the 
king of the whole of creation. In heaven 1 will be sitting next to 
God. Those who follow me will be saved, and those who leave me 
will fall into eternal hell." And then suddenly he is crucified, and 
dies like any ordinary man. What happened to his kingdom? He had 
promised to save the whole world and could not save himself! And 
if he was the only begotten son of God, how could God permit his 
son to be crucified? 

Western psychologists suspect that he must have been deluded. 
But there is no truth in that suspicion,- they are making a mistake. 
They do not understand the language of Jesus. Jesus was speaking 
to people who were just villagers, rustics, uneducated, who would 
not have understood the language of sophisticated philosophy. His 
language had to be of this mundane world. 

Such doubts cannot be raised about Mahavira because he was 
using a very cultured language. There are no loopholes in it to prove 
him insane. Then why did Mahavira invite self-imposed suffering? 
The reason is that it was an experiment in breaking away from the 
doer and the experiencer. 

It is a fact that you can easily become the experiencer in pleasure, 
but it is not as easy with suffering. The very suffering, the very pain 
does not allow you to be just the experiencer. A thorn pricks your 
foot and at that time you easily become a witness of this pain - you 
have to, because how can you enjoy it? There is no joy in it, you have 
no taste for it, you want distance from it. A distance is automatically 
created from the pain, the suffering,- the identification is broken 
because nobody wants to live in suffering. We have no desire to be 
close to it. It comes - that is another matter - but we want to keep it 
at a distance. 

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But when pleasures come we get very close to them, then we don’t 
want to keep any distance. When people welcome you with garlands 
as a celebrity then there is no desire to be a witness. In such a moment 
you don’t feel any interest in being a witness. In such a moment your 
only longing is to reap as much praise as possible. It never occurs to 
you that this person may be doing something wrong, or that he may 
be mistaking you for someone else — that it may be a joke, an illusion. 
No, in such a moment your mind says, "This is not an illusion. It 
ought to have happened long ago - it has taken this long because of 
your stupidity. At last you have finally recognized me,- what should 
have happened a long time ago is finally happening now." 

But if someone were to put a garland of shoes around your neck - 
an Indian insult, a sign of rejection - a distance would be immediately 
created. You would think that it cannot have been meant for you, that 
there must be some misunderstanding, that it must have been meant 
for someone else. Or else this person must be mad, a scoundrel, or a 
crook. You don’t think it is right, you throw it back on the other. But 
if a garland of flowers is brought for you then you claim it, you think 
you deserve it - you don’t consider it as simply a gracious act on the 
part of the other. You get identified with the garland of flowers. You 
want to be identified with pleasure because you want pleasure. You 
become identified with what you desire. You have never wanted to 
suffer, in fact you always wish suffering to go away, so even if it comes 
you try to distance yourself from it. 

So this becomes the principle of asceticism - to stand in the 
middle of suffering so that slowly, slowly, by and by, it becomes clear 
that you are not the doer, that you are not the experiencer. 

Mahavira would live without food for thirty days, so that when he 
was hungry, then he knew that it was not he that was hungry - it was 
the body, and he was only a witness to it. On the thirty-first day he 
would visit a village, eat some food, and know that he was neither the 
earlier hunger nor the satisfaction now. Both the phenomena were 

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outside of him. In his suffering he saw its separateness from his self, 
and then he would try to maintain the same separateness with regard 
to the pleasure as well. 

So asceticism is a technique. It is a way, a means to break our 
identification with the doer and the experiencer,- then the birth of the 
witness begins. On one hand the doer and the experiencer disappear, 
and on the other hand the witness begins to take birth. 

Try this experiment sometime. There is no need for you to go 
looking for suffering because so much suffering already comes to you 
on its own. So when sorrow comes, experiment with this technique 
of asceticism. You don’t need to take up a life of asceticism like 
Mahavira. He belonged to a family where he had already enjoyed 
plenty of pleasures, so perhaps he had had no experience of suffering 
at all, and that is why he had to make this choice. 

Your life is already layers of suffering upon suffering - you need 
not go in search of it. Just try to disidentify with the doer and the 
experiencer in that very suffering. When you are ill, keep a distance 
from the illness and remain a witness. Don’t experience yourself as 
being ill, only experience yourself as a witness to that illness. You 
will be amazed? as you experience it in this way the illness starts to 
disappear, and an enormous distance is created between you and the 
illness. As you experience yourself in this way you suddenly find that 
everything is healthy within. It is as if someone suddenly lights a lamp 
in the darkness and everything becomes clear. That moment of clarity 
is the moment of witnessing. 

The other technique is meditation. Mahavira’s emphasis is on 
asceticism, Buddha’s emphasis is on meditation. That is why the 
followers of both could not understand each other. They were 
contemporaries, but their followers could not understand each other 
at all because their emphasis is different and they look opposite to 
each other. 

Mahavira says: "How can there be meditation without asceticism?" 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

And Buddha says: "Asceticism preceding meditation is nonsense." 
And both the statements are right. 

And the interesting thing is that in this world two things do not 
become wrong just because they are opposites. Two opposite things 
can be simultaneously right. The world is so complex, so full of 
mystery, that two things in opposition are not essentially wrong. 

Ordinary logic holds that if two things are opposite, either both 
of them are wrong, or one may be wrong and the other right, but 
both can never be right. This only proves ignorance of the mystery 
of life. The mystery of life says both can be simultaneously right. So 
Mahavira and Buddha are both right at the same time, equally right,- 
only the directions of their paths are different. 

Mahavira begins with the experiencer, the doer, and what remains 
after disidentifying with it is the witness. Buddha begins with the 
awakening of the witness. When the witness awakens, the feeling 
of being the doer and the experiencer starts withering away. WTien 
the witness awakens totally, both the doer and the one who enjoys 
disappear. That is why Buddha could influence the whole world 
more than Mahavira. The basic reason is that nobody has so much 
happiness that he will go looking for suffering. Everybody already has 
enough suffering, so that the very idea of choosing anymore suffering 
seems ridiculous,- suffering is already available in abundance. 

Buddha’s teachings could be understood more easily because they 
do not increase one’s suffering. They are an experiment to awaken the 
witness directly, which reduces the suffering. 

Someday Mahavira’s teachings may become influential and 
someday maybe, when the world becomes too affluent, Buddha’s 
teachings will disappear. It is also possible that in the coming century, 
in America, the teachings of Mahavira may be revived - prosperity 
may have increased to such an extent that even suffering may start 
having an appeal,- so much prosperity and pleasure may be available 
that even suffering may look like a welcome change. 

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Here, two Western women sanyasins have been sleeping out 
under the trees. They told me in the morning that every Indian seems 
to be worried about this. They said, "Whoever meets us says, ‘What 
are you doing? Don’t do that! It is dangerous to sleep outdoors on 
the ground, during the night.’ And we are enjoying it." 

I told them, "You may not realize why the Indians can’t enjoy 
sleeping beneath the trees — they are so poor they are already living 
under the trees! You can enjoy it because so much distance has 
happened between you and the trees that to be there is an adventure 
for you." 

So both techniques can help this phenomenon to happen, that 
only the witness remains. Then, even though this witness may be 
within us, it is not ours,- it is all-pervading. With the experiencing of 
the witness the ego disappears, because the ego is nothing but the 
sum total of the doer and the experiencer. "I did," "I experienced," "1 
achieved" — all these create your I, the ego. If I did not do and I did 
not experience and I did not achieve, then where can your I stand? 
The whole accumulation falls apart. 

So the witness is not "mine." Understand it rightly: the witness 
is not "mine" — you become a witness to all that you have been 
calling "mine." As soon as the witness awakens the I dissolves. 
The witness is like an infinite ocean within us. It is within me, 
within you, within everyone,- somewhere it is asleep, somewhere 
it is awake, somewhere it is tossing and turning, somewhere it 
is dreaming, somewhere it is totally awake and somewhere it is 
dormant, in sleep, but the witness is the same. It is the same in a 
tree, it is the same in a rock — in deep, deep sleep. It is the same 
in animals - it is just beginning to stir. It is the same in us - once 
in a while awake for a moment. It is the same in Buddha and in 
Christ - totally awake. These differences are only quantitative. But 
someone who knows it in its fully awakened state finds instantly 
that it is a vast ocean. 


The Way Beyond Any Way 

The witness is oceanic, permeating us all. We are all in it, and it is 
in all of us. But it is one, and it is omnipresent. The sage says: About 
this there is no doubt. "I say it after knowing it, 1 say it after realizing it, 1 
have found it to be so." 

It often looks as though the statements of the sages are very 
egoistic assertions. Those who don’t know are bound to feel like that. 
Those who don’t understand any language other than that of the ego 
are bound to feel that way. To say that there is no doubt about it, is it 
not authoritarian? If we were to ask Krishnamurti, would he not find it 
authoritarian and an effort to create an ultimate dogma? Krishnamurti 
would not like to say, "What I say is beyond any doubt." He would 
say, "This would mean that 1 am putting pressure on you to believe 
me." And perhaps he is also right. 

There are people who declare things authoritatively only so that 
it is accepted. But it is also wrong to believe that all people are like 
that. People like these sages also exist, people who are not imposing 
any authority on anyone, who are just stating a fact — some humble 
information about which they have no doubt. And if they have no 
doubt — is it then wrong to say so? Or should they say that they 
have doubts just because of this fear that their statement might look 
authoritarian? Or do you think it will be right for them to say that they 
do not know whether they have doubts or not? Or should they not 
say anything at all, out of the fear that it may look like an authoritarian 
statement to someone? Anyway, does this fear make any difference? 

Krishnamurti has been saying his whole life that he is not anybody’s 
spiritual master, that his statements should not be taken as ultimate 
dogmas, that there is no need to accept what he says,- that he is not an 
authority. But the most interesting thing is that hundreds of people 
accept him as an authority. And it becomes even more interesting, 
and in fact a joke, that people accept him as an authority because 
he denies it to be so,- people regard him worthy to be a master just 
because he denies that he is a master! 

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Beyond All - the Witness 

It is a very interesting game of the human mind that when someone 
says to you that he is not a master your ego feels satisfied - "This is 
great, this man can be a friend, bowing down to this man’s feet is 
not necessary, we can hug him, we can be friends with him, he is not 
above us." 

It is true that when someone tries to be superior that is the ego. 
But when someone declares that he is not above anyone just so that 
others may feel good, this too is the ego — of course, from the other 
side, from your side. If someone tells you to touch his feet he will 
seem egoistic to you. But when someone asks you not to touch his 
feet because there is nothing special about him, then you are not 
aware that the satisfaction you are getting from this is your ego. And 
if, on the contrary, this man touches your feet, then what to say of 
your ego! 

A friend came to me and told me, "I only like Krishnamurti - he 
seems to be the only wise man." 

I asked him why, and he replied, "When I went to meet him, he 
moved near me and started patting my foot." 

Krishnamurti may have done this in a moment of love, but he was 
not aware that while he may have been patting this man’s feet, what 
was really being patted was this man’s ego. And Krishnamurti appeals 
to him because of that! 

Man is a very complex riddle. 

So when the sage says that there is no doubt whatsoever, he does 
not mean that you should believe what he says. No, he only means 
that his statements are not mere statements, they are coming out of 
his realization. And there is nothing wrong in saying it. He declares 
that within him there is no doubt. This declaration that About this there 
is no doubt - if this is how it is, what is wrong in it? If he knows it, he 
should express it. To say the truth is humbleness. 

It is very interesting that we go on repeating - especially during 
the past one hundred years this idiotic idea has gone deeper and has 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

become very influential — that we are all equal, that no one is lower 
and no one is higher. This has not changed anything. It doesn’t mean 
that we have stopped thinking of ourselves as higher. No, all it means 
is that we have stopped thinking of others as higher than us. When 
we say no one is lower and no one is higher, it doesn’t mean that we 
have stopped treating someone else as lower, it only means that we 
have stopped treating anyone else as higher. 

When we say that all are equal, in the deepest sense this is right, 
but we have no understanding of that depth. We have not yet come to 
that point where this statement is true,- where we are, this statement 
is totally false. There, where we are, we are not at all equal, in fact we 
are altogether unequal. But we have accepted this idea that equality 
exists. But where we are, we are all completely different and unequal. 

Another problem arises when a person believes that everyone is 
equal: then he will never discover the point where equality is truly 
possible. Someone who begins from the premise that everyone is 
unequal will one day reach the point where equality will become 
possible, because he will do something about it: he will go on a 
journey, make some endeavor towards improving himself, refining 
himself, changing the situation. But someone who believes himself to 
be equal with Buddha... This does not harm Buddha in any way. If it 
were to harm Buddha in any way there would still be no problem, but 
it harms the person who believes in this idea. 

Yet if Buddha were to say, "You are wrong" — then to you Buddha 
would appear to be egoistic by proclaiming that you are unequal! 
Then what should Buddha do? He can either say, "Yes, you are equal 
to me, not only equal but superior to me" - this satisfies your egos, 
but your journey for transformation and improvement will not begin. 
Or, if Buddha says in a natural and spontaneous way, "No, we are not 
equals" — then it hurts your egos. 

Buddha, Mahavira, Krishna or Christ have not declared that where 
we are now we are equal. Certainly they know that at some point, at 

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the center, we are all equal, but that is at our final destination,- we are 
not equal where we are now. There are big gaps, big distances between 
us on the path, on the journey, but there are no gaps between us at 
the destination. 

That is why Krishnamurti’s statement appeals to people, but it is 
dangerous because he says we are all equal even on the path,- that no 
one is a master and no one is a disciple, that no one is ahead, no one is 
behind. This is true at the destination, but not at all on the path. And 
he who believes that we are equal while on the path will never reach 
the destination. 

When the sage says: About this there is no doubt, it is only a humble 
statement about himself. What he means is that he is not saying so 
through a process of thinking about it but through knowing. And it 
is meaningful in one more way: because we are living in skepticism, 
in doubt. 

As 1 have told you: a bird just hatched from its egg tries its wings 
sitting outside the nest, but cannot gather courage to fly because he 
has never flown. He has no idea that these wings are for flying. He is 
also not confident because his wings are tiny, and the sky is so vast. 
How could they be helpful in this vast sky? And how is trust to arise 
in the unfamiliar, the unknown, the untrodden path, the vast sky in 
which one has never flown? Seeing some other bird flying, even then 
trust does not arise that "I can also fly," because it is not necessarily 
so that one can do what others are doing. 

But if another bird could say to this bird, "I too have passed 
through this phase. One day, sitting outside my nest, 1 too was 
worried. I too was unable to trust in my wings that I could fly in the 
sky, because I had no previous experience. But now I can tell you from 
my experience that there is no doubt about it ; although you have tiny 
wings, this sky is made for your wings and you can fly. Your wings are 
big enough, this whole sky is even too small for them. You can fly — 
this is beyond doubt. 1 say it from my own experience." 

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Experience means that one has known both situations, otherwise 
it will not be experience. One who has known the first situation in 
which the small bird is today, fluttering his wings, unable to gather 
courage, and who also knows the second situation, the experience of 
flying in the sky, this one can say to this bird, "Don’t be afraid, take 
the jump!" 

About this there is no doubt. 

This declaration is helpful. This proclamation does not mean what 
Krishnamurti inevitably takes it to mean - that meaning is also true, 
but not necessarily so. It does not mean that the other bird is trying 
to create his authority and is compelling others to believe in what 
he says. It does not mean that the other bird is trying to become a 
master and make the little bird a disciple. No, it is none of that. Yes, 
it could be so, but it is not inevitable. The big bird is simply saying to 
the little one to look at him, that what he is saying is not just baseless, 
that he is saying it after knowing it. "If you are able to see me and 
know me, then this trust may become infectious and give birth to a 
self-confidence within you too." 

A master becomes a trouble, a hindrance to you when he asks for 
your trust in him,- a master becomes helpful when he arouses your 
trust in your own self. In both situations, a proclamation that there is 
no doubt about it is essential. 

Chapter #17 

Such Is This Mystery 

I am this brahman known by all vedanta, 
the state beyond knowledge. 

I am not perceptible even as sky and air, etcetera, 

I am neither form nor name nor action. 

I am this brahman, the ultimate reality: 

the abode of sat, chit, anand - truth, consciousness, bliss. 

I am not the body - 

how can there be birth and death for me? 

1 am not the vital breath - 

how can there be hunger or thirst for me? 

I am not the mind - 

how can there be sorrow or pleasure for me? 

I am not a doer- 

how can there be bondage or liberation for me? 

Such is this mystery... 

Here ends the Upanishad. 

As far as the expansion of knowledge may reach, it will be called veda. 
Veda means the act of knowing, to know. Veda and vidvan - scholar - 
come from the same root. Veda means knowledge. 

But there is also a dimension of life, a hidden state of existence 
where even knowledge cannot throw any light, where knowledge has 
no access, where access is possible only if knowledge is left outside. 

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The Way Beyond Any Way 

Hence India has coined a unique word-you must have often heard it 
but perhaps without understanding it: the word is vedanta. 

Vedanta means that state where even veda, knowledge, comes to 
an end, where even knowledge cannot approach, where you have to 
go even beyond knowledge, where knowledge becomes meaningless, 
where knowledge has no access. Veda means all knowledge, as far as 
it can go. But even that does not help. All that has been known does 
not help,- all that has been experienced, all the treasures of knowledge 
are of no help. This is the point from where vedatita begins. Where 
veda comes to an anta, an end, there vedanta, the state which is beyond 
knowledge begins. At the dead end of veda is the beginning of vedanta. 
If we translate the word vedanta into English, the exact meaning will 
be "no knowledge." 

Let us understand these three steps. One is agyan, ignorance, 
the next step is called gyan, knowledge, and above it is a step called 
gyanatit, beyond knowledge. Ignorance is when we do not know, 
knowledge is when we know,- in other words, when we have gone 
beyond ignorance. Gyanatit means that we have gone even beyond 

Not only does ignorance create bondage, knowledge also 
binds you. Liberation is the state when knowledge has also been 
abandoned. Ignorance has to be dispelled, but that is not enough. 
Many methods to destroy ignorance have been created on earth, 
and many schools of thought have come into existence throughout 
the world which have tried to dispel ignorance. But probably it 
is only the wise men of the East who created a school of thought 
which said that a state comes when even knowledge has to be 
dropped, where even knowledge becomes a bondage. Not only 
is ignorance a bondage, knowledge too can become a bondage 
because knowledge is finite. Howsoever much one may know, 
knowledge cannot be infinite. If you want to know the infinite you 
will have to drop all knowledge. 

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Such Is This Mystery 

That is why, in a deeper sense, the man of ultimate wisdom appears 
as an ignorant man. In a way he becomes an ignorant man because 
he too is without knowledge. But in another sense he is quite the 
opposite from an ignorant man,- the ignorant man is that way because 
he has no knowledge, and the man of ultimate wisdom is ignorant 
because he has let go of this knowledge too. 

Try to understand it like this, one man is born a beggar and he 
grows up begging on the streets. Then there is Gautama the Buddha, 
who renounces his palace one day and suddenly goes to beg on the 
streets. The street is the same, the begging bowls may be the same, 
and the beggar and Buddha may be walking together on the same 
street to beg. So what is the difference? Both are out to beg, both 
have a begging bowl in their hands, both will stand begging at many 
doors; both are beggars - but are they really the same? The difference 
is not visible on the surface, but a great difference lies within. 

The beggar is just a beggar, he has nothing at all. He has never 
known any riches and so he is suffering from having nothing. He has no 
money - Buddha too has no money - but the beggar has never known 
money, that is why the lack of money is like a hollowness to him, a pit; 
it is a suffering, a wound - it oozes. His very being is empty,- his begging 
bowl is not only in his hands, his begging has gone deep within him. 
And this Buddha who is standing near him is also a beggar, but he has 
known riches. His trouble was not lack of money, his trouble was too 
much money. He had too much of it, more than enough, and therefore 
it became meaningless. He has left money after knowing it, money has 
become meaningless to him. But for the beggar it is very meaningful. 

Both are beggars, but Buddha’s begging has the grace of an 
emperor. Even in his begging Buddha has a grandeur which emperors 
would envy. Even in his begging Buddha is a master. For him money 
has become meaningless, it has dropped. The other man is also a 
beggar, but he really is a beggar,- money is very meaningful to him, 
and the desire for money continues. 

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The situation is the same between an ignorant man and the man 
of ultimate wisdom. The wise man renounces knowledge the same 
way that Buddha renounced wealth - after knowing it, after enjoying 
it, after having it. He sees that even knowledge has a boundary, that 
all knowledgeability stops there and no meeting with the infinite 
happens, so he renounces knowledge. He puts fire to his knowledge, 
puts his knowledgeability on the fire and burns it. He becomes like 
an ignorant man, but he is not ignorant. The ignorant man is still 
seeking knowledge, whereas this man has completed his journey for 
knowledge and has gone beyond it. 

Hence, the sage says: 

I am this brahman, known by all vedanta... 

the state beyond knowledge. 

He does not say: "I am that brahman who is known by all the Vedas, 
the ancient scriptures," because he is not the brahman which the 
scriptures talk about. That brahman is finite, bound by the concepts 
of knowledge. "I am the brahman which is known in that state which 
is beyond knowledge. Even the scriptures cannot know of it. Only 
someone who dares to renounce his scriptures, his knowledge, is 
able to know it ; I am that brahman." It will become easy if we try to 
understand it from the inside. 

We can know everything through knowledge except ourselves, 
because everything is in front of knowledge and we are only behind 
it. We can know everything through the faculty of knowledge, it is 
only a means for us. 

Understand it like this: we can see everything through our eyes 
except our eyes themselves. And if you are seeing them in a mirror 
you are not seeing your eyes, you are seeing only the reflection of 
your eyes. The reflection is something else. The eyes see everything, 
but why can’t they see themselves? What is the problem? In order 

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to see a thing a distance is needed, a gap is needed to see something,- 
it is necessary that they are facing each other in some way. Now how 
can your eye face itself? It is not possible. That is why the eye can see 
everything except itself. 

Knowledge too can know everything in this world except for the 
brahman, the ultimate reality — that which is hidden within us, that 
which we are. Knowledge is the eye of that brahman within us and all 
else can be perceived through it. The collection of all that perception 
is called veda, knowledge. What the brahman knows is called veda, 
knowledge, and that through which the brahman can be known is 
called vedanta, the state beyond knowledge. 

Now, how to know the brahman, the ultimate reality? Who is it 
who will know it? In fact the very language of knowing has to be 
abandoned because knowing always implies the other. How is it 
possible to know oneself? How can you know what you yourself 
are? - and who will know it? From what dimension, in which way 
will you come to know it? That is why whatever we come to know 
about ourselves will become something other than ourselves - just 
in the very knowing of it. In fact one’s own self is beyond the reach 
of one’s knowing. 

There is only one way and that is to take all our knowledge 
off like clothes and to put it aside, to become naked, as it were, 
without clothes. In the same way, when you can become naked of 
all knowledge then the revelation that happens is not knowledge, 
it is an inner revelation. The thrill of ecstasy that spreads within, 
the recognition that happens without any formal knowing, is called 
vedanta, the state which is beyond knowledge. A mind that discards all 
knowledge enters that state. 

Man is very clever, he has created scriptures even around 
vedanta - that state which is beyond knowledge. He has created 
knowledge even out of the state which is beyond knowledge. 
Pundits go on propagating that vedanta is not the end of the 

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scriptures called the Vedas, the knowledge, but the very 
essence of these scriptures. They go on insisting that vedanta is 
a physical part of these scriptures. This is an absolute lie, it is 
absolutely wrong. 

The whole effort of the sages has been to somehow free you from 
words, dogmas, knowledge so that you can become settled in that 
ultimate realm which is not available through knowledge but only 
through being. Knowledge is a barrier to being, because knowledge 
is nothing but an extension, an expanding outside of oneself. Being is 
to sink within oneself, to settle within one’s own self, to come to the 
original center. 

So vedanta means the state when you are ready to renounce all 
your knowledge, just as Gautam Buddha is ready to renounce all his 
wealth. Your knowledge too is a kind of wealth, it is an accumulation 
of an inner wealth. 

It is very interesting that even our wealth is not ours, we only 
possess it as a middle link in a great chain - a son inherits his father’s 
wealth, then his son inherits it from him. No one is born with wealth, 
this much is certain: it doesn’t matter where it comes from, no one 
is born with it. It may be given by the state, it may be given by the 
family, by society, or a tradition, it may be earned through hard work, 
or else it may be stolen, but one thing is certain: no one is born with 
it and no one dies with it. So wealth is a phenomenon that happens in 
the middle somewhere and is outside of us. 

It is the same with knowledge: it is obtained from others. 
Knowledge is the accumulated earnings of society. That is why animals 
cannot be knowledgeable — they have no language through which to 
accumulate their knowledge. That is why when the father animal dies, 
he is unable to hand over his experience to his son, there is no way. 
The son has to start again from where the father had started; hence 
animals cannot develop. 

Illiterate societies cannot make any progress. The oral information 

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from the father is not enough. Many things get lost and the sons have 
to start afresh - from ABC. 

As language evolved it created treasure troves of knowledge. 
And when we also created a script and discovered how to write, 
all fear of losing that knowledge disappeared. That is why this 
phenomenon has become possible only with man. With animals, the 
son begins exactly at the same point again where the father began 
- the son dies at the same point where the father had died, his sons 
have to start all over again from the very beginning — that is why no 
progress becomes possible. 

All human progress happens because each son takes over where 
his father left off; the volume of knowledge goes on growing and 
the wealth of knowledge goes on accumulating. Every generation 
accumulates knowledge and hands it on to the next generation. 
That is why the more knowledge a society accumulates, the more 
intelligent it becomes. Knowledge is an accumulation. 

Just imagine that for twenty years all universities, colleges, schools 
were closed, that all libraries were burned, and for twenty years there 
was no available means for any education,- that fathers stop teaching 
their sons, teachers stop teaching their pupils. Do you know what 
would happen? In twenty years you would be where you were two 
million years ago. Everything would be lost. 

Knowledge is an accumulation and it has to be handed over 
constantly, hence the existence of schools. What do the schools, 
colleges and universities do? They hand over the accumulation of 
knowledge from the father’s generation to his son’s generation, 
nothing else. The teacher’s work is this transferring, his whole business 
is to hand over what the older generation has accumulated to the new 
generation - that is his only work, that of being an intermediary link. 

Knowledge is also wealth obtained from others. All knowledge 
put together may be called veda. In India we call the Vedas, samhita. 
Samhita means that which has been collected, everything known which 

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has been compiled. That is why 1 do not agree that veda consists of 
only those four Indian scriptures called the Vedas. Whatever has been 
accumulated in the world as knowledge is veda,- knowledge as such is 
veda, a sambita, a collection, because it has been accumulated. 

That is why the sage says it very consciously, knowingly - they are 
not words said in passing .. .known by all vedanta, the state beyond knowledge. 
Not known through the Vedas, because that which is known through 
accumulated knowledge is not knowing. The knowing of the ultimate 
reality is not an accumulated knowledge, it is already within ourselves,- 
it does not need to be brought in from the outside. 

So it is possible that universities may be closed down and the 
education system discontinued - this movement seems to be 
happening all over the world. If the movements of young people, 
hippies and others succeed, then universities will not run and libraries 
will be burned,- soon everything will end. But there will be no harm 
done to the brabmangyan, the knowing of brahman , experiencing 
brahman. All the Vedas may be burned, the Bible and the Koran may 
be destroyed, but the knowing of brahman will not be affected because 
it is never attained through them. They have no relevance to it. 
Whenever the knowing of brahman happens, it comes from within. It 
may have been expressed on the outside, but its attainment is never 
from the outside. 

The Vedas may have tried to say what the realization of brahman 
is, but it is never received from the Vedas. They may contain the 
expression - everyone who has known this state has tried to convey it, 
and the compilation of all this has created the Vedas - but whosoever 
has known this state has not known it through the Vedas, he has 
known it by vedanta, by going beyond knowledge. And when I say 
"the state beyond knowledge," I mean the end of knowledge - when 
knowledge is transcended, when he lets go of knowledge. 

Such a man says: "I have known everything, but all that knowledge 
has come from the outside. Now 1 renounce it all and want to know 

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Such Is This Mystery 

that which is within, which never comes from the outside. Now ! 
want to seek and know that purest reality which is never available 
from the outside and is always present inside." 

Hence the sage says: 

.. known by all vedanta, 

the state beyond knowledge. 

This needs to be understood. If the sage had only said "that has 
been known by vedanta," it would have been slightly wrong. But the 
sage says "that has been known by all vedanta.' Because it is not that 
the understanding of vedanta is born only in India, no. Wherever it has 
happened, wherever this state beyond knowledge has happened, all 
is included. 

What Jesus realized is also vedanta, this state beyond knowledge, 
although he was not aware of the Upanishads — that was not necessary. 
When Lao Tzu came to realize it, it was through vedanta; when 
Eckhart came to realize it, it was through vedanta - whenever anyone 
in the world has realized it, it has happened through vedanta, the state 
beyond knowledge. Whatever collection of knowledge they had, it 
was only through dropping it that they came to realize the ultimate 

So the sage says: 

.. .by all vedanta. 

Wherever, at whatever time, at whatever place, and under whatever 
circumstances it has been realized, it has always been realized through 
vedanta, that state which is beyond knowledge, which is the cessation 
of knowledge. This is the comprehensive meaning of vedanta, the state 
which is beyond knowledge. 

But as man is, and as the mind of man is, we still come across 

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people who claim to be vedantins — adherents of vedanta. Nobody can 
be a vedantin, this is sheer foolishness. Nobody can be a vedantin 
because vedanta is not an "ism," a doctrine, a dogma. Any "ism" is 
again a scripture, a Veda. So if someone says he follows vedanta he is 
absolutely mistaken, because where there is still a following, how can 
knowledge have been dropped? To be a follower as such belongs to 
knowledge, so no one is a vedantin, a follower of vedanta. And when I 
say this, what I mean is that no one can make an "ism," a theory out 
of it. Whosoever tries to do that has not understood it, he has missed 
the point,- he has missed the real thing. The very meaning of vedanta is: 
no "ism," no theory, no scripture, no knowledge. How then can you 
become its follower? 

In fact to enter into this state every theory, every scripture, every 
principle has to be left behind. Even the most ancient scriptures are 
to be abandoned. Then we can say that such a man is in the state of 
vedanta — but he is not a vedantin, a follower. He has entered into 
the state beyond knowledge, this much can be said, but he cannot 
say that he is its follower. This would be an inconsistency, the very 
meaning of the word would be lost. 

1 am this brahman known by all vedanta, 

the state beyond knowledge. 

"1 am that which the sages realized when they dropped all their 
knowledge." What the sage is proclaiming is a proclamation from 
ultimate reality. One may think that this proclamation is very egoistic: 
"1 am that, which has been known by all vedanta, the state beyond 
knowledge!" No, not at all, there is no trace of ego anywhere. The 
sage is only saying: "Now I am talking about that reality, that ultimate 
reality which cannot be approached through knowledge. "I dwell" 
is possible where only pure "isness" can enter,- where knowledge 
becomes a barrier, where knowledge is a disaster, where knowledge 

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is an obstruction, where knowledge creates disharmony, where 
knowledge creates restlessness — I dwell there, where not even a 
ripple of knowledge exists." 

We have all heard that if thoughts cease, meditation happens. But 
now try to understand something deeper — when knowing ceases, 
brahman happens. With the cessation of thoughts meditation happens, 
but the notion of knowing remains in this meditation. When the notion 
of knowing also disappears, when there is no ripple of knowing, when 
all knowledge disappears, then brahman, the ultimate reality happens. 

I am neither form nor name nor action. 

1 am this brahman, the ultimate reality: 

the abode of sat, chit, anand - truth, consciousness, bliss. 

1 am not the body... 

The last part is a very precious statement, extremely precious. 

I am not the body - 

how can there be birth and death for me? 

I am not the vital breath — 

how can there be hunger or thirst for me? 

I am not the mind - 

how can there be sorrow or pleasure for me? 

The last statement is the reply to the original inquiry, where this 
Upanishad began. The reply that has come after such a long journey 
is astonishing. The reply is: 

I am not a doer - 

how can there be bondage or liberation for me? 

This Upanishad began with: What is bondage? What is liberation? These 
were the first questions. The sage has discussed things in such detail, 

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entering deeply into the reality of life, that you could never have 
imagined that this would be the final reply which he gives. He should 
have said so in the very beginning! 

What the sage is now saying is that "When there is no bondage in 
the first place, how can there be any liberation? I am not something 
which can be bound, 1 cannot be bound; freedom is my nature, so 
who can put me in bondage? How can 1 be bound? How can any 
bondage stick to me? I do not have even this much existence that I 
can be bound. Where is the body which can be bound? Where is the 
form which can be imprisoned? Where are its outlines?" It is only 
after going beyond all the boundaries, having discussed freedom from 
all forms at length... Perhaps by now the seeker himself may have 
forgotten that his original inquiry was: What is bondage? What is liberation? 
That inquiry has receded so far into the distance that perhaps you did 
not remember it either! The query has been left so far behind, the 
discussions have gone so deep, to such profundities, that now the 
sage says: 

I am not a doer - 

how can there be bondage or liberation for me? 

"If bondage does not exist, then what meaning is there in 
liberation? If bondage is not possible for me, then where does the 
question of liberation arise?" 

This Upanishad began with a question and it ends with a 
question. The sage says, "How can there be bondage? - and 
therefore how can there be liberation? Where I am, bondage and 
liberation cannot exist." But if this were the answer, he could have 
said this at the very beginning! 

1 remember a Sufi story. Hassan, a fakir, left his village and set 
out in search of a master. An old fakir was sitting beside a rock and 
Hassan said to him, "1 have set out in search of a master. 1 have no 

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hope of attaining to truth in this village" - in one’s own village no one 
has such hope — "and if the people 1 know have any truth in them it is 
beyond my imagination, this much is certain. That s why I m leaving 
this place. Would you please guide me as to where I should go, where 
I should search?" 

The old fakir said, "The way is very difficult, it is arduous. But 
since you have asked, I will tell you. If you find a man with such and 
such features and who fits such and such a description, don t let go 
of him, follow him at all costs,- a man with such and such a face and 
eyes, a turban of such and such a type on his head, wearing such and 
such a kind of robe, sitting in such and such a posture on such and 
such type of a rock, under such and such a tree - if you find this man, 
don’t leave him." 

Hassan continued to search and search for this man. It is said that 
he went to every town and village but he could find neither the tree, 
nor the rock, nor the man. He wandered for thirty years. He wandered 
until he became tired, thoroughly fed up, exhausted, worn out. He 
did not find even a glimpse of truth and his very thirst for truth almost 
faded away and it lost all its intensity. Now he even began to doubt 
that there was such a thing as truth anywhere, so how could he find it? 

He became angry with that old man: 'What nonsense! He 
put me to so much trouble, telling me to look for a man of this 
description, at a particular place. Had he not done so, perhaps I 
would have succeeded in my search. I have been ruined by seeking 
for this man, by this search,- neither could 1 find the place he 
described, nor the man. " 

Hassan returned to his village. That old man was sitting just at 
the entrance to the village. Seeing this, Hassan was surprised — the 
tree looked like the one he had been told about, the rock was also 
the same. He came close and found that the eyes were also the 
same. Hassan fell at the old man’s feet and cried, "Are you mad? 
If you are the man I have been searching for, why didn’t you tell 

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me in the very beginning? Why did you make me wander about 
for thirty years?" 

The old fakir replied, "1 did tell you that very day, but thirty years 
of wandering were necessary in order for you to recognize me. I had 
told you everything on that very day but you didn’t look at me, nor 
did you notice the rock or look at the tree. You were in such a hurry, 
all ready and eager to go on the search. You had already taken it for 
granted that truth could not be found at this place which you were 
leaving behind. I described the eyes — you didn’t even look at my 
eyes. I described the features too. It is not only you who has been 
put to a lot of trouble, what about me? - I couldn’t leave this rock for 
thirty years! I had to wait for you, until you came back. 

"This much was certain, that you would return,- where else could 
you go? All the descriptions 1 had given couldn’t have matched 
anywhere else except this rock, this tree. So you have also created 
trouble for me. But your thirty years of wandering were necessary; it 
has been essential for you to pass through this suffering. This anguish 
was a spiritual discipline for you." 

The sage could have also given him the answer in the very 
beginning. He could have said, "What bondage? Who is it that can be 
bound? And when there is no bondage, what meaning does liberation 
have? Who is to be freed?" But then no journey to the inquiry would 
have been possible and perhaps the seeker might have returned 
quietly, but not at peace. 

Perhaps he might have kept his mouth shut, perhaps he might not 
have been able to say a single word in response, but this would not 
have been a solution,- it would have been no help to him. The sage 
had to wait. It was a long journey. Inch by inch on this long journey 
he effaced the seeker. 

It is remarkable that the sage totally ignored the initial inquiry. He 
paid no attention to what the seeker had asked and instead just began 
to eliminate the seeker by saying: "...not the body, not the senses, 

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Such Is This Mystery 

not the mind, not the intellect, not I, not you, not that, neither the 
scriptures, nor the knowledge - beyond all and everything." The sage 
went on dismantling him, dissolving him. And now, when the process 
of dissolution was complete and he saw that the iceberg which had 
come as a seeker had melted and become one with the ocean, he 
asked the seeker, "What bondage? Bondage to whom? Who do you 
think you are that you can be bound? Where are you that you can 
be bound? And when the reality is that you have never been bound, 
what is this liberation that you are now seeking? Who is it you want 
to free? Who will attain this liberation?" 

This Upanishad is wondrous in this respect. It begins with a 
question and it ends with a question, but the form of the question, 
the context of the question, the quality of the question has changed. 
In the beginning the disciple had asked the question, and now at the 
end the master is asking the question. And somewhere in between 
these two, lies the answer. That is why both had prayed... 

.. protect us both,- may it care for us both. Together may we strive. . 

"Protect us both, lest we drown in the middle." 

To have just given an answer would have been very easy, but to 
help someone to reach to the solution, to the questionless state, is 
very difficult. Anyone can give answers, giving answers does not make 
one a master,- one may become a teacher, but he will not be a master. 

This is the difference between a master and a teacher. The master 
gives a solution: the questionless state,- the teacher gives answers. You 
can ask a teacher what is what and he will tell you. But even this 
answer may not necessarily be his own, he may have received it from 
someone else. It is also not necessary that the answer he gives will 
have solved his own problem. This too is not a necessity. It is a fixed 
answer, it is traditional,- the teacher just passes it on to the student. 
But the master does not give answers, he only gives the solution. And 

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the solution can be given only through your enlightenment - there 
is no other way. In fact only enlightenment brings the solution, the 
questionless state. 

The whole process described by this Upanishad is the process of 
enlightenment. If you go on moving step by step through this process 
you will attain to enlightenment. Enlightenment is the solution. 

The day the solution is attained, the master puts the question back 
to the disciple: "Now I am asking you!" Because all these inquiries 
were, just as I said earlier, like that illusion when you see a snake 
in a rope at twilight, and then you come running to me to tell me 
about the snake and to ask me how to drive it away, how to remove 
it. Should it be killed with a stick or with a bullet — or whether to just 
stop going that way? 

If 1 just say to you that there is no such thing as a snake there, 
that you are under an illusion, that it is your mental projection and 
that you are mistaken, then it is impossible to expect you to accept 
my statement. You may keep quiet, but the snake is more real for 
you than my statement. I am only making a statement! The snake is 
more real. No, I can give you an answer, but that will not solve the 
problem. It would be more appropriate to take a lamp and come with 
you and say, "Let us see how big the snake is so that we can bring a 
sword or a stick of the appropriate size, or we will make some other 
suitable arrangements to kill it - but first, let us go and see the size 
of this snake." 

Someone who knows that there is no snake and yet takes a lamp 
and comes with you, is not a teacher. A teacher would have only 
given you an answer. It is possible that he might have even explained 
to you how sometimes people mistake a rope for a snake. He might 
have explained everything, but if you ask him to come and walk 
along that path with you he will say, "My answer is only what I have 
heard. I don’t want to get in any trouble - there may be a snake 
there, 1 don’t want to get involved with it. My answer is taken from 

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the scriptures. I know it. My teacher told it to me, his teacher told 
it to him,- I know it all well. I am ready to tell you everything but I 
am not going to go there." 

The master will go with you - knowing full well that there is no 
snake. But the reality that there is no snake has to become your own 
experience. He will come with you, carrying a lamp. This whole 
Upanishad goes ahead of you, carrying a lamp. Inch by inch the 
path is being lit, darkness is being dispelled, and soon the master 
arrives at the rope. You may still be seeing the snake but he says, 
"Look, where is the snake? This is not a snake’s tail, this is a rope,- 
this is not a snake’s body, this is a rope,- this is not a snake’s head, 
this is a rope." 

This is what has been discussed here, that you are neither this 
nor this nor this - which is nothing but eliminating the snake. When 
the I has been totally eliminated and only the rope remains, then the 
master asks the disciple, "Now how to kill this snake? Which snake is 
to be killed? And if there is no snake, what will the sword kill? And if 
there is no snake, what advice can 1 give you about being safe from it? 
You tell me!" And with this question, the Upanishad ends. 

Here ends the Upanishad. 

There is not a single answer from the disciple. The disciple 
should say something now,- at least a thank-you — at least show some 
gratitude, at least show some expression of devotion and delight 
- something! He should say something! But the disciple is utterly 
silent. The disciple is silent because in a sense he no longer exists, not 
even to speak. Not only has the snake been eliminated, the disciple 
too has been eliminated. The person who had come to inquire is no 
more, the mind which had come inquiring is no more, the ego that 
had questions and wanted answers is no more. In fact he who had 
come is no more and he who now remains never existed before, so 

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who is to give thanks? To whom to give thanks? What response can 
there be? 

Zen Master Lin Chi used to say to his disciples, "If you do not 
answer my question this staff will hit your head,- and if you do answer, 
then too the staff will hit your head." 

Certainly, it was a koan because he didn’t leave any way out. And 
it was Lin Chi’s practice to ask his disciples questions. He used to 
say, "You can ask me questions only if you first answer mine, this is 
the condition." 

The master used to tell the disciples to answer his questions first, 
and only then would he answer theirs. And Lin Chi kept his staff in 
his hand. Then he would say, "1 will hit you if you answer and if you 
don’t answer, then too I will hit you." Often people would run away, 
but those who knew of his ways stayed. 

When Bokuju went to meet him for the first time, he said to Lin 
Chi, "Let us do it this way - first complete your hitting, let’s get it over 
with, then the questions and answers can happen later on. Otherwise 
this will create a distraction and an unnecessary disturbance. This 
is an easy job, let’s get it over with first; questions and answers are 
difficult matters. First you do your hitting — here is my head." 

And Lin Chi said, "So the man has arrived. 1 will not ask you 
questions - you can ask me." 

If your questioning is just out of curiosity that is another matter, 
it has no value. But if the questioning is a part of your quest then 
it is a gamble, it is a big gamble, because to ask such questions as: 
What is bondage? What is liberation? is to put one’s life at stake. After 
eliminating everything, after wiping the whole slate clean so that not 
even a word is left on it, in the end the master puts the question 
back to the disciple. So that not even knowing may be left behind, 
finally he wipes that off too and says, "No scriptures and no sense of 
knowing has any entry there." 

He destroys everything, burns everything to ashes, burns the very 

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seed itself. And then he asks, "What bondage? Who is there to be 
bound? What liberation? When one has never been bound in the first 
place, then what liberation is needed?" 

Had the disciple spoken, even said "Thanks, "this entire Upanishad 
would have to begin all over again, because it would have meant that 
while the snake may no longer be there the disciple is still there. He 
still speaks, he is still there to say, "Your compassion is great. You 
have explained everything, I have understood it all. 1 have attained 
to knowing." 

If you return from a master as a knower, it has been a waste of 
time going to him. A master is one who destroys you, from whom you 
cannot return because you no longer exist,- only then has your going 
to the master been meaningful. 

Religion is the art of dying, of annihilation,- it is the science of 
extinguishing your I on your own accord. It is like when someone 
blows out a lamp and the flame disappears: similarly, our ego, our I, 
has to disappear in a way that it can never be found again, so that only 
an emptiness remains behind - the void. It is only in that emptiness 
that we can realize our real being. Hence the last statement: Such is 
this mystery... 

Such is this mystery... 

Here ends the Upanishad. 

"Upanishad" means mystery, and "mystery" means that which even 
if we understand, it remains beyond our understanding, or that which 
we may not understand and yet seems to have been understood. This 
is what mystery means. Those who don’t understand carry the false 
notion that they have understood, and those who understand know 
that it is beyond comprehension,- this is the meaning of mystery. If 
something is understood through your understanding then it is not 
a mystery, if something is not understood just because you did not 

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understand then too it is not mystery. "Mystery" implies that those 
who do not know, feel that they know,- and those who know, feel that 
they do not really know. 

In the last days of his life Socrates said, "It was good while I didn’t 
know; at least the illusion of knowing was there. But now it has become 
difficult because since I have known, 1 know that I don’t know." 

This is what is being called the mystery. 

The oracle of Delphi had declared that Socrates was the wisest 
man in Greece. People ran to Socrates saying, "Do you know that the 
oracle of Delphi has declared that you are the wisest man?" 

Socrates replied, "The oracle is late in her declaration; when 1 
was wise, no one came to tell me this. There was a time when 1 was 
wise, but then nobody declared it. At that time, 1 myself wandered 
around declaring it! And now, when I have come to know that I know 
nothing, now this strange idea has entered the oracle’s mind. There 
must be a mistake somewhere. You go and ask her again." 

They went back. They went back happily, in a way, because they 
were hurt to hear that Socrates was a wise man. If Socrates had said, 
"Yes, I am a wise man, " then they would not have believed in him that 
much. But he said, "I am the most ignorant man." They said, "Socrates 
must be right, and the oracle must have made some mistake." 

They went back and asked again: "It seems there is some 

But the oracle replied, "I never make a mistake." 

So they said, "There must be a mistake because Socrates himself 
says, ‘I am an ignorant man.’" 

The oracle replied, "That is why I declared him the wisest man 
- this is the reason. As long as he was a wise man, I could not 
declare it." 

This is what is being called the mystery. "Upanishad" means 
mystery. Otherwise the word Upanishad literally means that which has 
been realized by sitting near the master - not by hearing the master 

366 | 

Such Is This Mystery 

but by sitting near him,- because in hearing one only receives words, 
but by sitting near him one receives something more. But sitting near 
him is an art. Listening is very easy, sitting near him is very difficult. 

The word Upanisbad means that which one attains to by sitting near 
the master — simply by sitting near him, by coming closer to him, by 
surrendering to him, being in love with him, being as a nothingness 
near him, forgetting oneself near him. In fact that is why what the 
master says is not as important as what he is, because what he says is 
heard, but what he is, is received by sitting near him. 

It often happened that when Gurdjieff had a disciple sitting 
near him, he would look at the disciple with so much anger that the 
disciple’s heart would be shaken. Many disciples simply escaped 
from him. Gurdjieff was quite an expert in it; he was so expert that 
those who were close to him said that people sitting on one side 
of him would see anger in one eye, while he would be expressing 
love through the other eye to the people sitting on his other side. 
And the people sitting on opposite sides would sometimes get 
into an argument over their observations as to what kind of man 
Gurdjieff was. 

One would say, "What a loving person Gurdjieff is - there was 
pure love pouring out of his eyes." The other would say, "Are you 
mad or something? I was also there, and his eyes showed only evil and 
fierceness and nothing else." 

Alan Watts, a great Western thinker, has called him the "rascal 
saint" — a saint and still a rascal. But Gurdjieff was a wonderful man. It 
is very easy to be an ordinary saint or to be an ordinary rascal. But the 
people who knew him, who had sat close to him, always told others 
not to worry about what he does, what he says, how he moves his eyes, 
but only to concern themselves about being in his company, near him. 
"What he speaks through his eyes, through his words or through his 
facial gestures need not be your concern, because in order to learn 
something from him it is enough to just be with him, near him." They 

I 367 | 

The Way Beyond Any Way 

said, "Don’t worry about his expression or whether he is calling you 
names, showing anger or showing love, don’t care about all that, these 
are all his devices. Through them he finds out whether you have come 
just to listen to him or to be with him." 

If you have come only to hear and understand him he gets rid 
of you, because he says that a person who has come only to hear 
him cannot go far. One should come close to him - an intimacy, a 
closeness, a nearness is needed. In that nearness, consciousnesses 
start merging into each other — the doors between you open and the 
consciousnesses begin to move into each other. 

The day this inner flow of consciousness happens, the Upanishad 
happens. On that day - only on that day, and not before that. 

I 368 | 


Osho defies categorization, reflecting everything from the individual 
quest for meaning to the most urgent social and political issues 
facing society today. His books are not written but are transcribed 
from recordings of extemporaneous talks given over a period of 
thirty-five years. Osho has been described by The Sunday Times in 
London as one of the ‘1000 Makers of the 20th Century’ and by 
Sunday Mid-Day in India as one of the ten people—along with 
Gandhi, Nehru and Buddha—who have changed the destiny of 

Osho has a stated aim of helping to create the conditions for the 
birth of a new kind of human being, characterized as ‘Zorba the 
Buddha’—one whose feet are firmly on the ground, yet whose hands 
can touch the stars. Running like a thread through all aspects of 
Osho’s talks and meditations is a vision that encompasses both the 
timeless wisdom of the East and the highest potential of Western 
science and technology. 

He is synonymous with a revolutionary contribution to the 
science of inner transformation and an approach to meditation 
which specifically addresses the accelerated pace of contemporary 
life. The unique OSHO® Active Meditations'" are designed to allow 
the release of accumulated stress in the body and mind so that it is 
easier to be still and experience the thought-free state of meditation. 


Every year the OSHO® International Meditation Resort™ welcomes 
thousands of people from over 100 countries who come to enjoy 
and participate in its unique atmosphere of meditation and 
celebration. The 28-acre meditation resort is located about 100 
miles southeast of Mumbai (Bombay), in Pune, India, in a tree-lined 
residential area, set against a backdrop of bamboo groves and wild 
jasmine, peacocks and waterfalls. The basic approach of the 
meditation resort is that of Zorba the Buddha: living in awareness, 
with a capacity to celebrate everything in life. Many visitors come to 
just be, to allow themselves the luxury of doing nothing. Others 
choose to participate in a wide variety of courses and sessions that 
support moving toward a more joyous and less stressful life, by 
combining methods of self-understanding with awareness techniques. 
These courses are offered through OSHO® Multiversity™ and take 
place in a pyramid complex next to the famous OSHO® Teerth 

People can choose to practice various meditation methods, both 
active and passive, from a daily schedule that begins at six o’clock 
in the morning. Early each evening there is a meditation event that 
moves from dance to silent sitting, using Osho’s recorded talks as 
an opportunity to experience inner silence without effort. 

Facilities include tennis courts, a gym, sauna, Jacuzzi, a nature¬ 
shaped Olympic-sized swimming pool, classes in Zen archery, Tai 
chi, Chi gong, Yoga and a multitude of bodywork sessions. 

The kitchen serves international gourmet vegetarian meals, made 
with organically grown produce. The nightlife is alive with friends 
dining under the stars, and with music and dancing. 

Online bookings for accommodation at the OSHO® Guesthouse 
which is inside the meditation resort can be made through the 
website below or by sending an email to 

Online tours of the meditation resort, how to get there, and 
program information can be found at: www.osho.rom/resort 


In this multi-lingual OSHO website you can experience 
meditation, explore the OSHO International 
Meditation Resort, enjoy an online magazine and 
take an online OSHO Zen Tarot reading. You can also 
browse the meditation and self-discovery programs 
available in the OSHO Multiversity. 

All OSHO audio talks and e-Books are available for 
download from the shop section and complete OSHO 
Library is now online for your reference and research. 

To contact OSHO International Foundation go to 

OSHO International Meditation Resort 
17 Koregaon Park 
Pune 411001 MS, India 
resortinfo @ osho. net 


Osho calls the Sarvasar Upanishad “the secret of secrets, 
the mystery within all the mysteries, the essence of 
essences.” It is one of the most ancient texts of the rishis, 
the seers, of India. . - 

In life, many things can be learned without the person 
undergoing any inner transformation: he can remain the 
same and just go on accumulating knowledge and skills. 
But in the realms of the inner search unless the person 
is ready to change and transform through a deep and 
sincere inquiry, he will never understand and find the 
essence within. 

In The Way Beyond Any Way Osho describes, step by 
step, how to search for this essence. But he cautions, 

“I warn you in advance that to involve oneself in the 
teachings of an Upanishad is like playing with fire. 

An Upanishad cannot be understood without also 
becoming transformed.” 

r w 


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